In a rare instance of someone in the music industry actually telling it like it is—or was—Third Ear readily admits that when it was originally released in 2008, Fabric Lig's "Soul Is Back" failed to sell well. This time round, the label has enlisted the services of some of techno's biggest names to push "Soul," although the original version is curiously absent from the re-release. It sounds like Third Ear is keen to cover a number of bases, so we are treated to a passable take on nouveau Chicago jack by Marco Passarani, and, for vinyl buyers, a disappointing decision to make Mental Overdrive's take digital only. The fact that Mental Overdrive's approximation of the bassline from "French Kiss" coupled with dramatic stabs, makes for a more impressive end product than Passarani's version is sure to rankle.
And so to the techno remixes: Fluxion's aggressive dub techno combined with a fantastically wobbly acid bassline works well if you can block out the annoying "the soul is back" vocal sample that persists throughout. Indeed, as the track progresses, the urge to reach through the speakers to throttle the unnamed vocalist intensifies. Underground Resistance opt for a different tact, their Timeline remix serving up the kind of warbling keys and fluttering strings that have become a trademark UR sound. There is a sense that UR are on autopilot here, but the excellent jazzy piano solo four-and-a-half minutes in is almost worth the price of the release alone. First prize goes to Luke Slater, however, whose approach is deceptively simple. The UK producer's slamming remake centres on a cacophony of chiming bells that grow more and more intense as Slater filters the track to an inevitable yet deadly effective denouement. No complex ideas or deep concepts here, just a realisation of killer techno instincts.
Buy Soul Designer - The Soul Is Back Remixes at
Tracklist: Soul Designer - The Soul Is Back Remixes A1 The Soul Is Back (Luke Slater Remix)
A2 The Soul Is Back (Marco Passarani Remix)
B1 The Soul Is Back (Fluxion Remix)
B2 The Soul Is Back (UR Timeline Remix)
Digital: The Soul Is Back (Mental Overdrive Remix)