Minus the Bear

Interpretaciones del Oso

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Minus the Bear might not be a band one thinks of when it comes to remixes, but on Interpretaciones del Oso a slew of acts have their way with the act's songs, sometimes to striking effect. That said, there's often little sense that the mixers have moved much beyond a previous decade's idea of what such reworkings can be like, though this can be both positive and negative. Alias' take on "Pachuca," for instance, brings out the Bryan Ferry-goes-emo-on-the-Riviera qualities of the lyric a bit more, thanks to the shuffling beat; if a bit like what a never-never sound of 1996 was like it's still a treat. The real winners on the disc are the ones that alternately play up the band's strengths or find a new strong fusion in their own right. The P.O.S. "re-do" of "Drilling" which opens the disc captures the first quality well. It initially seems off-putting, but when the mix suddenly turns anthemic towards the end of the song it finds an almost unexpected grace, set against the calm yearning of the vocals. Perhaps unsurprisingly IQU have one of the best numbers with "This Ain't," which while definitely a shoegaze-dance mix to a large extent and so not revelatory per se, still possesses a great sense for dramatic silence in its stop-start pauses. One of the most striking efforts comes courtesy of the take on "The Game Needed Me" by the Oktopus, with the song transformed into a miniature dub monster, thanks to a huge bass growl and guitar echo mania -- a tactile listen that has just enough of Metal Box about it at points, drop-kicked into a new time. Though the disc as a whole has no one set quality to it, Interpretaciones is still worth at least one listen.

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