Hot Chip - We Have Remixes EP

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  • Wherever you stand on Hot Chip's music, you get the sense that, like Radiohead, their record collections are at least as interesting as yours, stuffed with provocative influences and worthy peers and followers. (Full disclosure: They used a track of mine on a commercial mix CD, so I might not be the most unbiased judge of the latter category.) That clearly seems to be the operating principle behind this EP, which gives five remixers a go at four tracks off the band's 2010 album One Life Stand. Todd Edwards' "Micro Chip" remix of "Hand Me Down Your Love" sounds pretty much exactly as you'd expect it to, running the lush, ebullient, slightly '60s sounding song through the micro-sampling sieve, and pairing a jacking drum groove with bright, burbly keys and sped-up background vox. Relative newcomers Wild Geese—the trio of Frank Tope and the Chain's Dan Foat and Nathan Boddy—tackle the same song, and their version is a stripped-down acid grind with a distinctly Kompakt feel: the post-acid squelch recalls Justus Köhncke's "2 after 909," and the piano chords are directly descended from Westbam's "Old School Baby," famously used on Michael Mayer's Fabric mix. A big, ballsy rave-up, it's even more dramatic than the original, which is hardly a shrinking violet itself. Like Edwards, Ghostly's Osborne bends "Take It In" to his own recognizable style, rescoring the expansive, bursting-at-the-seams tune for a demure arrangement of Rhodes, analog synths and spindly groove box. What he preserves almost in full are the vocals, and what he comes up with is ultimately far catchier (and more effective) than the original: listen to it long enough, and Hot Chip's version comes to sound like it's the remix, and an almost ungainly one at that. Asking the stylistically omnivorous Hot City to remix "We Have Love" might seem like a bit of a coals-to-Newcastle proposition, given how much the song already flirts with a kind of speed-garage-into-the-future vibe. But their version turns out to be one of the most functionally invigorating cuts on the EP, boasting an array of plasticky synths reminiscent of the thrift store of your dreams—blunt-nosed bass, jabbing chord stabs, low-budget string pads—and an unrepentantly ravey groove. Caribou, who has recently been reinventing himself as a Border Community acolyte, continues that tendency on his remix of "Brothers," which neatly (or messily, as it were) splits the difference between the streamlined form of techno and the unstable din of a modular system in meltdown. It's actually far more restrained than Caribou's recent Four Tet remix, with just enough nervous chaos to balance out the original's dulcet vocals.
  • Tracklist
      A1 Hand Me Down Your Love (Todd Edwards Micro Chip Remix) A2 We Have Love (Hot City Remix) B1 Brothers (Caribou Remix) B2 Take It In (Osborne Remix) Digital: Hand Me Down Your Love (Wild Geese Remix)