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Iris: "Reconnect"
(***)

Covert art

Diamonds in the rough

Reconnect is a remix album of "Disconnect", the first full-length production of the synthpop prodigy Iris. It contains one song not released on the original album and various remixes of the original songs, including three versions of "Annie Would I Lie To You". As you might imagine, a remix album can never satisfy a fan of the original album. Not all your favourites get on the remix disc, or the remixes of your favourites are unimpressive compared to the others. Such is the case here as well, to an extent anyway.

I'll just get the tracklist grudges out of the way right now. No remixes of Twilight, damn. Only one remix of my favourite song on the original, The Way I Live My Life. Plus they could've replaced one Annie-remix with a remix of Loom or The Picture, too. This is all fairly inconsequential, and I'll tell you why in a minute.

Ok, so there was only one remix of The Way I Live My Life... But what a remix it is! If it wasn't for another track that's equally good, this would be the best track on the album - it takes all the elements that were good about the original and makes them better. Sent chills down my spine in the chorus, amazing and uplifting. The second track that really stands out is the haunting, delicate and beautiful Everybody Is Life. It simply filled me with feelings of love - and longing. It's one of those songs that you listen to for the first time and immediately emotionally bond to, and then you'll have a personal relationship with the track for the rest of your life. (That happens to me every now and then - but not all too often, I can assure you).

Other remixes spin the harmonies of the original songs to great effect, presenting a new way of interpreting the original song - the "Wideband Network Mix" of Annie being a prime example. Then we have "Lovett's Sonar Eclipse Edit" of Lose In Wanting, which does what most tracks here do: Rework the sound a bit, and add a new melodic hook. The only track on the album that didn't really fit my taste was the "Goa Mix" of Saving Time - it's just pretty crude. It's goaish, yet a little detached and lazy. The chorus does work - which should come as no surprise as the original track is pretty solid.

The verdict? Thumbs up. You should get "Disconnect" cheap somewhere before getting this, and then check out these more polished versions of the originals. You might like some of the originals better, but I also liked some of the remixes better than the originals. On the whole, like Disconnect, this release is steadfast quality throughout. You can't really afford to not buy this record if you have even the slightest interest in synthpop.

TOP TRACKS: Everybody is Life (Seaside Mix), The Way I Live My Life (Distant World Mix), Annie Would I Lie to You (Y1.999k Extension)

Tracklist

  1. Annie Would I Lie To You (T.O.Y. Mix) [Sample]
  2. Lose in Wanting (Lovett's Sonar Eclipse Edit)
  3. The Way I Live My Life (Distant World Mix)
  4. Saving Time (Goa Mix)
  5. Danger is the Shame (Refraction Mix)
  6. Endless (The Echoing Green Mix)
  7. Waves Crash In (Midnight Sky Mix)
  8. Everybody is Life (Seaside Mix)
  9. Lose in Wanting (Pyrotechnic Mix) [Sample]
  10. Saving Time (Original Demo Version)
  11. Annie Would I Lie to You (Y1.999k Extension)
  12. Annie Would I Lie to You (Wideband Network Mix)
Image of CD

A Different Drum 2003

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Review by Saboteur


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