Boomkat Product Review:
Battles' 'Mirrored' was a surprise hit earlier this year conquering not only the internet forums but also the mainstream press with its diversity and effortless humour. They went from muso favourites to the 'weird' band everybody liked (especially live) in minutes and the album was a testament to their diversity and ADD energy. The highlight of that full length for me at least was 'Tonto', the Don Caballero-style math rock prowess, the funk, the melting pot of rhythmical styles and that je ne ce quoi that has you coming back for more. It was an obvious single then and Warp have finally seen sense in putting it out for the masses, and not just that but they've commissioned a quite stunning video to go with it (which is included here on DVD along with the video for Atlas!) and some remixes. Yep, how ever do you remix a band like Battles? DJ Koze managed to pull it off with his gloopy tech-house take on 'Atlas' on their last single, but now we have current man-of-the-moment The Field (aka Swede Axel Willner) and probably the most overworked man in electronic music Four Tet weighing in for their pound of flesh. Willner is an artist whose music is tailor made for doing remixes since his whole style is balanced on the micro-samples he uses, so true to form micro-samples the Battles original re-forming it into an 8-minute posh trance epic in a way only he can manage. Four Tet's remix is a little less obvious with the man known as Keiren Hebden throwing away his usual break in favour of some 80s house action, taking the riffs from the original track and forging one of the oddest dance tracks you could ever care to hear. I'd love to see how this one goes down on the dancefloor actually, the breakdowns simply have to be heard to be believed. The best however is saved till last, and after two live jams ('Tonto' and 'Leyenecker' respectively) we get a remix of Battles' attempt at new-jack 'Leyendecker' from NY hip hop producer DJ EMZ with his lyrical protégé Joell Ortez on the mic. EMZ rises to the challenge admirably resulting in a track that fires on all cylinders. Seems Battles manage to take their eclecticism wherever they go then, and this EP is yet another testament to their greatness. Huge recommendation.