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Album Review: Tilly and The Wall - That Remix Sucks

Tilly and the Wall are a little, well, off the wall.

They use a tapdancer to keep rhythm on their records and they hail from Omaha, Nebraska with no sense of shame. But they make exceedingly good pop songs. And they have been kind enough to offer 'That Remix Sucks' for free to help soothe your ailing coffers - a collection of remixes, new and old, to make the feet tap and the wallet sing. What could be better?

The original 'Beat Control' boasts the 80s danceability of Miami Sound Machine's 'Love Will Save The Day'. It has a bass sound which makes it a surefire dancefloor hit at the indie clubs, but its sweetly naive melody makes it a pop song with a fun side.

The La Lepus remix of 'Beat Control' does what remixes do best, which is to substantially change the song. As such, 'Beat Control (La Lepus Remix)' is missing many component parts which make the original so damn cool. In fact, it repeats the "break it down" section of the original vocal for well over the first minute, before filtering the original through some sort of electronic jiggery pokery. The result is a remix which has removed all of the charm and plenty of the class from the original.

The 'Beat Control (James Reuill Remix)' is a different beast - although largely unrecognisable, it has a distinct euphoric dance beat which makes for a great dance tune. Taking "let the beat control you" as its central vocal tenet, it is beefy and funky, and would guide anyone through a cross-training cardio programme with uptempo ease.

The 'Beat Control (Tom Knight Remix)' is the strongest on show here. Striking up for all the world like 'Forever In Electric Dreams', it lifts the main vocal line and places it on an even more 1980s rhythm, holding onto the track's originality but giving it a more dancey treatment.

Brazilian sexpoppets CSS have a go at 'The Freest Man' here, which had the capacity to improve the record tenfold, but which has made the mistake of computerising human emotion, leaving it sounding for all the world like an ode to robot love.

'Bad Education', here taken on by No Context, is perhaps the most baffling of all the tracks here. Stretching Tilly and The Wall's four-minute flamenco marvel into a more than nine-minute dancefloor disaster, there's nothing that says FAIL like the remix sans vocals. For a gymtastic workout tune, fine, but not for the Tilly and the Wall fan.

To say, "That remix sucks, uh, sucks" would be a little glib, and there are great things about free music, of course. But it doesn't make the best of these Tilly and the Wall songs, and that's a crying shame.

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