It’s for the same reasons ‘Black Devil In Dub’, recently released on Lo Recordings, doesn’t hold the same allure. The first half of the 12-tracker is new dub versions of ’28 Later’, while the latter half recruits the new cosmic disco calvary to remix the album (three of which were previously released as a 12” by LoEB). But these revisions don’t add to the BDDC mystique – if anything, they detract from it, placing the tunes in only the context of 2007. The dub versions sound as though they’re being manipulated live in Ableton, with elements springing in and out of focus through the tunes’ basic shells, never quite reaching the level of impact of the originals. And though the dub versions lessen the claustrophobic crush of the overstuffed originals, they’re only slightly better suited for dance floor.
The remixes, on the other hand, fare far better at this objective. Reverent and revved up in consummate fandom, you won’t find any big ego trips discarding the blueprints here. Norwegian duo Elitechnique leads the pack with a highly caffeinated cover of ‘The Devil In Us’ (sung in French?), followed by Prins Thomas’s subtle edit of ‘On Just Foot’ which extends the thrumming bassline arpeggio throughout and generally revels in minutiae. Beardo disco fans will rejoice at Brooklyn duo In Flagranti’s excellent organic version of ‘Coach Me’, while Quiet Village finds a rhythmic lock groove in ‘I Regret the Flower Power’ and swathes it in a delayed narcotic haze – but the remix truly proves its worth when the kick drum awakens to supply a pulse. The bass-heavy remix of ‘Constantly No Respect’ by Black Mustang has almost electro-house qualities about it, releasing its pent up tension six minutes in with a bold percussion break. Closing out the disc is Unit 4 (aka Jupiter Room) with a wobbling retake of ‘An Other Skin’, the least interesting remix of the bunch.
‘Black Devil In Dub’ doesn’t deliver the total package of intrigue and solid tracks some BDDC fans, myself included, have been craving. But taken as a supplementary package, the dubs are forgettable and forgivable, and most of the remixes are essential. If nothing else, it’s another opportunity to let the devil in us out for another lap around the dance floor.
Wed / 20 Jun 2007
1. The Devil In Us (Dub)
2. On Just Foot (Dub)
3. Coach Me (Dub)
4. I Regret the Flower Power (Dub)
5. Constantly No Respect (Dub)
6. An Other Skin (Dub)
7. The Devil In Us (En Francais) w/Elitechnique
8. On Just Foot (Slide Inside) w/Prins Thomas
9. Coach Me (Again and Again) w/In Flagranti
10. I Regret the Flower Power (Fragments of Fear) w/Quiet Village
11. Constantly No Respect (The Phenomena Of) w/Black Mustang
12. An Other Skin (Days of Blackula) w/Unit 4