Monday, 19 July 2010

Ape School: Remixes LP

An Ape School remix album probably seems a natural stop gap for fans of their eponymous debut. The warped electronic psychedelia of main man Michael Johnson has way more in common with early beat makers like 60’s mavericks Silver Apples than the Nuggets bands so revered by the garage rockers labelled his contemporaries.

Gathering an assortment of like-minded technicolour dreamers, this release goes someway to subvert the conventions of a traditional remix collection. Fog’s Andrew Broder re-imagines the dream pop stomp of ‘That’s OK’ as a Rickenbacker driven slow-burner so effectively that anyone hearing the two versions would assume Broder’s sparse jam was the original.

Elsewhere, Pollination’s take on ‘Wail to God’ creates a wall of sound around the original with dirge guitars and echo-laden beats, climaxing in a synth heavy wash that far outshines the original’s comparatively weak Zombie’s inspired sunshine pop.

Despite a far larger palette of sounds available from the likes of Daedalus and Pop Levi, ‘Remixes’ stays faithful to its inspiration whilst still bringing enough to the party to keep things interesting. Sadly, in doing so this collection can’t help but highlight what the originals could have gained with the help of more imaginative sonic explorers.

Published in Issue 97 of Artrocker Magazine Feb 2010

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