- When Tim Simenon was busy assembling the latest Bomb The Bass album, he took a shot in the dark and sent a demo to Mark Lanegan. "…he really liked it," says Simenon. "…[and] a month or so later I got the vocal back from him."
Centred around the well-trodden theme of darkness and light—a theme Lanegan references often in his ominous work with Queens of the Stone Age and his saccharine duets with Isobel Campbell—the track has Lanegan's powerful voice brooding from above, while Tim Simenon doles out four minutes of ethereal synth pop underneath. The vocal is expectedly good, and the backdrop provides adequate support, but Simenon's use of antique technology ultimately lacks the frailty and overall beauty of contemporaries like Apparat and Four Tet.
The remixes here are geared strictly for the clubs. Mercury Prize nominee Maps takes his usual melancholic aesthetic and lashes it tightly against a raw house beat which may leave his fans scratching their heads quizzically. (Then again, it might give them a break from their Vonnegut novels—if they feel like dancing.) Meanwhile, Patrice Bäumel takes the uncluttered original and whittles it further, carving away the chord washes and IDM kicks and replacing them with Badalamenti-esque piano stabs and a deep pulsing bassline. It's sparse and haunting, with a weight that sits like humidity.
Finally, Gui Boratto throws a distinct nod toward Sumner and Hook with his mix. Jangling guitars and bass gently accompany Lanegan's vocal, creating something straight out of the New Order 101 handbook. If you're expecting another "Bug Powder Dust," steer clear, but if you're up for a decent slice of hooky electronica, then get your raft and head on down.
01. Black River
02. Black River (Maps Remix)
03. Black River (Patrice Bäumel Remix)
04. Black River (Gui Boratto Remix)