Most remix albums are mixed bags of hit and misses. Some
remixes fail to capture the essence of the original track while others are
noisy, jumbled, bombastic messes. But in some cases, they take what’s great
about the original and run with it, adding different layers, moods, textures
and a new overall feel and the final product acts as a sort of counterpart to
the original work. Fans of Juno Reactor will be pleased to hear that this new
remix album contains tracks that are, for the most part, worthy of the
originals and don’t piss on the already near-perfect work created by band
mastermind Ben Watkins.
Remixing a track by Juno Reactor isn’t an easy affair
either. With tracks ranging from various genres including: trance, goa, techno,
tribal, and other mashed-up forms of electronic-dance-rock, most of the
original works by Juno Reactor already sound
like they are remixes themselves. So in a way, it’s like remixing a remix by an
artist who is a master at his game. Well, it’s no surprise that Mr. Watkins
enlisted a wide range of some of the best remixers around the globe including:
Bombay Dub Orchestra, Dino Psaras, and Soundvandal to name a few. The final result
is an atmospheric and hypnotic journey complete with multicultural flavors and
a multidimensional feel.
The only thing some short attention span listeners might
take issue with are some of the lengthier tracks. Perfect Stranger’s mix of
“Rotorblade” is the only one that can use a tiny bit of shortening [the original version is 8 minutes, did it really
need to be upped to 9:30?], but for the most part, the album is smooth
sailing and none of the remixes are overly tedious and repetitive.
Diehard fans who have been around since the beginning will
feel nostalgic as they are teleported back to 1995 when they hear the Lost
Remix of “The Heavens” by creator Juno Reactor — one of the album’s strongest highlights.
In fact, most of the remixes bring back that old school Juno Reactor feel which
is never a bad thing. And you’re either a corpse or catatonic if the tribal
grooves of Ace Ventura’s “Conga Fury” remix don’t get you gyrating, or any
track on the whole album for that matter. Inside
the Reactor is a worthy achievement when it comes to remix compilations and
it does what it’s meant to do — it entrances you, takes you on a cerebral journey
and makes you want to dance.
DOWNLOAD: Conga Fury (Ace Ventura
Remix), Children of the Night (Soundvandal Remix), The Heavens (Juno Reactor
Lost 1995 Mix), Guardian Angel (Dino Psaras Remix) GIL MACIAS