A second album of remixes and a new victory to add to the Californians' discography. HEALTH have always intrigued me. Despite being noise-rock paranoids with a spick-and-span resume, on " Disco2" they allow a handful of fashionable artists - those who, generally speaking, make "electronica for indies" - to create versions of their tracks while avoiding the insistent hype and settling into a peaceful, gentle sound field, endowing their songs with an enveloping Tantric layer. Much of the blame lies with the ghostly voice, as if it were, at times, a psychofonia of Jake Duszik, which lends itself more to sensory suggestion than to cazurro dances. Two years ago, with the first installment of " Disco" (that excellent reinterpretation of the debut album), HEALTH laid the groundwork that resulted in "Get Color" months later. It should be asked how much the remixes really weigh on their plate before returning to the studio. A spiritual guide, an influence? Perhaps hearing the unreleased "USA Boys" - which closed their performance at Primavera Sound, although they were pretty low-key and serene that day, so to speak - one can form an idea of what the future may hold for them.
" USA Boys" is toxicity personified: a new demonstration of Gregorian chant led by marked synthesizers and a rhythmic base that makes us think that the witness "Get Color" can definitively leave the noisy shades of grey behind and opt for a greater electronic uniformity. With a start like this anyone would think that what comes next is irrelevant. However, if HEALTH have shown us one thing during their short career so far, it is that they know they are surrounded by good friends who, instead of deconstructing their parts, raise them to infinity without, in many cases, forcing us back to the originals. There is room for cheating, as is the case of Tobacco, who have used their own " Creepy Phone Calls" to reinterpret a " Die Slow" so it is less paranoid, but still glorious. In turn, Pictureplane, coming back after reformulating " Lost Time", decide to give their opinion on the greatness of the Balearic beat in this frame of mind. Others, like Crystal Castles -who, because of the duel fought with our protagonists on " Crimewave" gained world media attention when they were complete unknowns back on the first remix album- give " Eat Flesh" an ethereal elegance sustained by the stark percussion of the original track.
On " Disco2" there is even room for deep house reminiscent of Underworld courtesy of Blondes in those eight little minutes of " Nice Girls", or for the lo-fi postulations -as is clearly shown on their EP- of Small Black on " Severin". There is also space also for Gold Panda, stretching the stylistic rope of Four Tet on " Before Tigers", and the Canadian CFCF doing his thing with the same song and feeding his nostalgia for 80s R&B. Call it great stuff, but what we really have is a remix album that does nothing but strengthen the self-declared love that many have proclaimed for " Get Color" that brought out the psycho killer who dwells stealthily within us, and filled our lives with deafening bucolic nightmares.
Sergio del Amo
Eat Flesh - HEALTH (Crystal Castles Remix)
HEALTH - Before Tigers (Gold Panda Remix)