Battles – Dross Glop

Pleases and frustrates in equal measures

So one of Clash’s favourite LPs of 2011, ‘Gloss Drop’ has been remixed. This induces mixed emotions. Scanning the list of well-wishers it all looks incisive, but appearances can be deceptive. Gui Boratto kicks things off with ‘Wall Street’, removing the epic delirium with a loping euro kompakt-esque re-run built of convention. ‘Sweetie & Shag’ gets stretched by The Field into a numbing wander into oblivion, whilst ‘Ice Cream’, perhaps the original LP’s best moment, is privy to a frivolous re-rub by Gang Gang Dance.

These however are the low points. Where ‘Gloss Drop’ was remarkably alive and capable of inducing synthesesia, it suffered from an autistic mania that may be too much for some listeners. Thankfully here we find modern producers such as Kode9 and Shabazz Palaces grounding its cosmic opera to the bass shaken ground of planet Earth.

The sonic terrorist of Kode9 brings new ideas to ‘Africastle’ by shaking up the percussive styles like batshit; it’s a delight and heightens any dancefloor break the trio of Battles ever managed. Likewise Shabazz Palaces’ take ‘White Electric’ and make it very much their warped own, no bad thing on a remix project.

Thus overall ‘Dross Glop’ may please and frustrate in equal measures. Can such a derivative and scattered exploit engineered via email ever excel or surpass the 9/10 leftfield voodoo that Battles conjured in their bizarre working practices? You’d pray not. ‘Dross Glop’ should be treated as an intriguing and tardy companion on a journey that should be commenced with only the original of ‘Gloss Drop’ stuffed into yer lysergic lugs.



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