Neon Indian – Errata Anex (EP) (Transgressive Records)
Following the release of 2011’s ‘Era Extraña’ album, Neon Indian, the brainchild of Mexican born, Texas based, Alan Palomo, will be releasing a remix EP entitled ‘ERRATA ANEX’ later this month. The EP features remixes of tracks from the aforementioned album remixed by Actress, Boyd Rice, Optimo, Twin Shadow, and Patten.
Neon Indian’s 2009 debut, ‘Psychic Chasms’, not only earned the then 20 year-old a spot on numerous year-end lists, but assisted the forming of a genre that, though known by a few names now (hypnagogic pop, glo-fi, chillwave), summoned a very unique and specific electro-mangled sound. After nearly two years on the road, Palomo followed up with the album, ‘Era Extraña’. The sample-happy stylings of his prior efforts had been traded in for what is probably best described as 8-bit version of M83, equal parts dream-pop, electronica and shoegaze.
This remix EP sees Neon Indian explore yet more new territory. Of the EP’s eclectic selection of remixers and how the EP came about, Palomo says, “These remixes are a small collection found along the way of my year on the road while we were touring Era Extraña. The artists were chosen by whatever most consistently blared out of my headphones that Fall and what I was most giddy to hear an amalgamation of from the songs I was playing live, and the artists I’d listen to later that night. If imitation is the highest form of flattery, then total re-imagination from song scraps must be something far more warm, mutant, and mutual. I hope you enjoy them.”
On the accessible and danceable “Polish Girl (Optimo Mix)” gone are the 8-bit and Hot Chip-like qualities and in their place are layers of rhythmic synths submerged deep in reverb giving the whole song an aquatic feel. Contrasting this track is “Halogen (Boyd Rice Remix)”, which is peculiar and even slightly unnerving. No sight of the M83 comparisons are found here. No, Boyd Rice’s remix is industrial flavoured and shares more in common with early Cold Cave than the dream-pop original.
Turning up the atmosphere with its murky synth-pads, lo-fi drum beat thuds, and odd 80’s-esque synth leads, whatever Kavinsky traits were heard in the original are all but gone in “Heart Release (Patten Remix)”. “Blindside Kiss (Actress Remix)” is the most bizarre and arguably unique of all the remixes. The once My Bloody Valentine style shoegaze has been replaced – instead what you’ll find is a very peculiar lo-fi mix of synth bends and obscured vocals held together with a constant 4/4 kick-drum pulse. To makes things even more strange, the remix even exhibits a jazz-like swing that somehow brings to mind Ella Fitzgerald’s “Fever”. Go figure!
Along with “Polish Girl (Optimo Mix)”, the “Hex Girlfriend (Twin Shadow)” remix is the most accessible and also the most hooky. Ironically the original version actually shows hints of Twin Shadow yet on this remix the song is made epic with the volume turned up to distorting levels, creating a delicious and noisy dream-pop number.
Which remix one enjoys most all depends on your own preferences and how far you like remixes to go. Regardless, each remixer brings their own unique flavour and interpretation making this EP a fun and listenable EP.
The ‘Errata Anex’ remix EP will be released as a digital-only release on 22 April, 2013 by Transgressive Records.
Listen to “Halogen (Boyd Rice Remix)” below: