Reviews Isis Oceanic Remixes Volume I

Isis

Oceanic Remixes Volume I

I am going to assume for your own sake that you are familiar with Isis, the doom-sludge-metal outfit that saw an overwhelmingly positive response to their last full-length, Oceanic. If you are completely clueless, you might want to go out, purchase said album, and them come back after you've given it a good four or five listens all the way through. No seriously, go out to your local record store and do this, I'm not continuing until you've done so.

Okay, now that we're all on the same page, we can continue:

On the A Side, we start off with a remix of "False Light," that has been reworked by Ayal Naor, a fellow Hydrahead conspirator that plays guitar, among other duties, in the band 27. Naor interpretation, "False Light (Carry Edit)" opens with a combination of artificially created atmospheric noises and a quieter section that normally appears towards the center of the song. Slowly the traditional beginning of the song fades in and we continue on through the song. In the background one can make out the addition of different electronic noises. As the song approaches the lull that was used to open the album, Naor has inserted the vocals that Maria Christopher, vocalist for 27, sang on the track "Carry." This addition flows seamlessly with the music, creating a beautiful passage. The passage then fades away and the song closes out in original fashion.

The second track on the A Side that was revisited is "The Other," and this interpretation was organized by James Plotkin of Phantomsmasher fame. For the opening segment of the song, Plotkin has stripped the song down to just the keys that were likely buried in the mix. Over this he has layered distorted versions of Aaron Turner's coarse vocals. The next segment of the song is fairly similar; everything has been removed except this time the simplest guitar notes and the occasional bassline remain, as well as some sequenced drum-machine work. The final portion combines both of these smaller segments into one chaotic yet carefully orchestrated piece.

On the B Side we have just one remix to dissect, that being another remix of "False Light," this time done by Oktopus, the famed DJ from experimental hip hop act Dálek. The "False Light (Deadverse Remix)" definitely has a more urban feel to it than the other two remixes in this volume. There is an underlying beat throughout the entire track. Over the top, Oktopus has left Turner's original vocals, which at times are sent through different effects. In addition, he has added a variety of dark industrial grooves, very reminiscent of what appeared on Dálek's From Filthy Tongue of Famished Gods and Griots Unfortunately, if you're not a fan of Dálek, you might not enjoy this rendition.

Overall, I must say this is one of the most interesting remix albums that I have ever heard. I really wasn't sure what to expect from a remix album covering a genre like this, but I think the artists that contributed did a commendable job. And lucky for us, the second volume (of four) will be released in mid-July.

8.5 / 10Michael
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8.5 / 10

8.5 / 10

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