Au Revoir Simone Au Revoir SimoneNight Light
Since those three porcelain dolls Au Revoir Simone started polishing up their vocal chords (in around 2005), dream-pop has had a valuable, bankable name to lean upon. Last year, the New York group presented “Still Night, Still Light”, a second LP that was highly suggestive, given its crystalline nature, and which disappointed only a small, specific minority without any real arguments. But before undertaking the always-feared test of a third LP—we don’t know whether they were obligated by their recording company—Au Revoir Simone have let various outrageously hip artists like Silver Columns, Neon Indian and Aeroplane practice the art of the remix, reinterpreting their latest songs. But don’t think that you will find pounding beats or rave capriciousness here. These three women recreate stealthy spaces, contained euphoria, and logically, the majority of these reinterpretations pick up from the same premise.
A clear example is to be found in the biggest exponent of Swedish baroque, Jens Lekman, who is led by the spirit of Henry Mancini, to make “Shadows” into the main song that any period Hollywood melodrama would kill to have in its credits. Equally inspired is the metamorphosis to which “All or Nothing” has been subjected –an affected melody that gives way, in the hands of Jensen Sportag , to something like a Camera Obscura B side performed by a big band– or “The Last One”, where Mack Winston (here without The Reflections) eliminates the original version from our play lists to be replaced forever with his remix. Silver Columns, the main vindicators of Jimmy Somerville in the middle of 2010, have had the difficult challenge of making a minor song like “We Are Here” into a carefree half-time that could have been included without regrets in their debut, “Yes, and Dance”. And if that isn’t enough, taking advantage of the stealthy voice of the group, Angel Deradoorian ( Dirty Projectors) does a good job transforming “Only You Can Make Me Happy” into a hypnotic catharsis. If only for this reason, it’s worth anyone who follows the band paying some attention to “Night Light”.
In any case, it can’t all be praise. The Londoners Your Twenties don’t quite manage to make “Anywhere You Looked” work, in spite of the air of slowed-down tropicalism. And the same thing happens with “Knight of Wands” according to Dam Mantle: although they take advantage of the melodic column of the original song, they miss the golden opportunity to give it new vigour (instead, they weigh it down with effects and destroy the timbre of the voices resorting to Auto-Tune effects). And later comes the danceable part. The only two inklings of club sound are those offered by Neon Indian and Aeroplane ,in their own way representatives of the glo-fi label, who separately remix the same piece, “Another Likely Story”. The first group goes in for space funk, emulating the greatness of Kavinsky, while the Belgians –we don’t know whether Stephen Fasano had already abandoned Vito de Luca then– reclaimed the essence of the still remembered remix for Friendly Fires ( “Paris”), closing the album with a remix that owes a lot to Passion Pit’s “Little Secrets.” “Night Light” does justice to “Still Night, Still Light”, and it’s a juicy candy to make the wait for Au Revoir Simone’s third studio album (we hope it’s coming soon) more pleasant.
Sergio del Amo