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Music Review: Moby – Last Night Remixed

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“Remixes in 2008 are more important than they've ever been, and the great thing about the ubiquity of software like Ableton and Logic is that now almost anyone can be a remixer,” Moby told NME.com.

And indeed at times it seems like anyone can be a remixer, with YouTube and MySpace footage inundating us with incalculable “remixes” of “Chocolate Rain” or some other such gibberish. Most DIY-oriented remixers tend to be talentless hacks with forced beats and blank synth.

Every so often, however, the odd gem can sprout forth from the lukewarm puddle of internet mania.

For an artist like Moby, remixing represents the genesis of something real. He got started remixing tracks by Aerosmith, David Bowie, Michael Jackson, and Brian Eno. Cutting his teeth on repackaging classic tracks, there is perhaps no better spokesperson for the DIY school of thought than the Bald-headed One.

With the release of Last Night Remixed, Moby gives a collection of electronica’s “cream of the crop” an opportunity to strut their stuff in potent, vigorous fashion. His music has always been at home in the hands of cut-up artists, with 2006’s Go – The Very Best of Moby: Remixed filling dance floors with its takes from artists like Katcha and Armand Van Helden.

This time around, Moby’s dance-oriented ’08 release Last Night is given to the wolves of sonic remodeling. Featuring the likes of Holy Ghost!, Freemasons, AC Slater, and Kris Menace, this set of remixes runs like a continuous club cut with no breaks in the pumping beats.

The cuts set into each other and the house beats keep pouring down from the heavens. In essence, Moby has taken the remixes and pushed them together into what comes off like one extended cut. Each song bounces, flutters, pulsates, and jams until the break of the next one cuts in like a fresh dance partner. And it all works well as the vivacious soundtrack to a neon night out on the town.

“I Love to Move in Here” is given a trio of remixes and each one jams with electrifying force. Holy Ghost! takes the first jab with the opening track, bouncing the song along with keen horn loops and a tight beat. Later, the Seamus Haji remix flashes the rave lights and melds perfect synth with a cascading vocal sample. The final remix, dubbed the “Style of Eye Piano Remix,” is mysteriously tribal.

“Alice” is mixed twice, once by General Midi and once by Brooklyn newcomers Drop the Lime. Dutch producer Mason takes one cut of “I’m in Love,” while The Shapeshifters cut a longer mix that sounds right at home in a sticky rave tent amongst the glowsticks and pill-poppers.

All in all, Last Night Remixed delivers and is exactly what it sets out to be. A non-stop club scorcher, this is one record that will keep the lights flashing until the sun comes up. Moby’s congress of remixes showcases some brilliant new talent and gives the dance-oriented tracks from Last Night a boost in the right direction.

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