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Origamibiro: Shakkei Remized

Reviewed By: Maarten Schiethart
Label: Denizen
Format: CD

One of my favourite albums from 2011, which was riddled with atmospherics from London, is the next subject for a remix. It is more a tribute, with recognition well deserved, since because of the variety of musicians involved, the coherence of the original album has been lost.

ISAN's remix of 'Dusk & Umber' is the first version to fit the shoes of the urban sobriety original. Time will tell whether the Origamibiro original or the ISAN version shall remain to tickle our fantasy the most. Two more versions of 'Dusk & Umber' are also present - another from Upward Arrows and the third(and closing off this album one) from Last Man on Mars. A year ago now, I felt 'Shakkei' left no room for improvement but the remix business is a whole new ballgame.

'Ballerina Platform Shoes' comes in no less than four versions. Three of those built the middle section of this remix album. First, Proem provide a short, harsh and punky rendition. This is followed by Phylum Sinter's dream-like fragmentation of the composition and lastly a trippy skipping vinyl remix from the Remote Viewer as if it's 1998 and we're still enthusing about clicks_+_cuts. With this retrospective in mind, 'Shakkei Remixed' almost sounds like a lost treasure from the vaults of said era.

The first drastic change in mood must be Offthesky's remix. That version of 'Flotsam Drift' plays with the concept of sound behind daytime FM-radio; big, levelled and tailor-cut, whereas the Ghost & Tape remix of the same song brings back happy memories of the Penguin Cafe Orchestra. In his inimitable and phlegmatic style, Melodium sprays a lovely drizzle over 'Imitations of Footfall'. A couple of established artists carry the torch here like Leafcutter John and Plaid but introducing the likes of K-Conjog, or Umin, a disjointed Max Richter I tend to think, makes for compulsory listening just as did the original 'Shakkei' album.


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