Album Review: Two Door Cinema Club – Tourist History (Deluxe Edition)

By on Thursday, 4th November 2010 at 2:00 pm
 

A lot has changed for Two Door Cinema Club since the initial release of ‘Tourist History’ in the UK in March. For one, even if they aren’t megastars outside the UK and Ireland, they are definitely on everyone’s lips. Of all the strange things to happen to me at Roskilde this year, the most surprising had to be the countless number of times I was stopped by Scandinavian punters, gawking at my Two Door Cinema Club bag, begging to know when and where Two Door were performing at Roskilde. Sadly, although they played Hove Festival in Norway, they did not play Roskilde, so I had to inform the disappointed people, the lot of them, that they would not see the Bangor trio in action that weekend. (Note to the denizens of Copenhagen: I have informed the band that you would like to see them. Sooner than later.)

As I’m sure you know, the original version of ‘Tourist History’ was released in the UK in March and if you want a reasonably detailed summary of it, you can read my earlier review here. My opinion of the album hasn’t changed much, except that I can tell you after having seen the band live twice now, I can say that the live versions of the songs are much more energetic and hard-hitting than their album versions. Because the first CD in their re-released, deluxe version of ‘Tourist History’ is identical to the original release in March, I’m going to focus on the second CD.

The only ‘new’ song on the second CD is the opener, ‘Kids’ (the rest of the CD are the best remixes the band have found of songs from ‘Tourist History’). While ‘Kids’ is not immediately exciting as, perhaps, the first time you heard ‘Something Good Can Work’ or ‘I Can Talk’ on the radio, I still think it’s pretty cool. The guitars are melodic as ever. Yes. Then there are the remixes. I was trying to think of the best way to talk about them and thought maybe comparing the different remixes of each type of song, pitting them against each other (and in some cases, being quite cruel) might be the most interesting way to go. I’ve also included the origin of the remix artist, because I think it’s pretty cool Two Door chose people from all over. Click on the cut below to read more.

What You Know remix by Cassian (Sydney) – I’ll talk about this one first, because it’s very special. This summer TDCC asked the fans to take the stems of this song and remix it however they wished, and the band would choose the best of the bunch. The beat comes in first, and then the synths, sounding so effortless like you can see hands in front of you walking up and down the keys…it’s very slickly produced. Really well done.

I Can Talk remixes

French Horn Rebellion remix: Alex Trimble’s voice gets compressed. I am willing to look forward to this and focus instead on the fun, ‘Flashdance’-y synth action. (Brooklyn / Milwaukee, USA)

Moulinex remix: While I think I’d have fun working out to this one, its orchestration is too stuffy for me. The robotic voice added o n to join Trimble’s is pretty cool, I have to say. (Anaheim, USA)

Winner: French Horn Rebellion wins this face-off. (Sucker for the mad synth.)

Undercover Martyn remixes

Whatever/Whatever remix: This one has an almost insect-like quality (meaning, it’s very pointed, if that makes sense). Even the beats at the beginning sound a bit like the noise you hear outside your tent when you’re camping. (not sure where they’re from b/c I can’t find their MySpace)

Jupiter remix: Heavier-hitting beats. Likely coming to a club near you soon. (Paris)

Softwar remix: You sound like you’re in a video game listening to this. Or maybe a interstellar spaceship hurtling through space. It’s just cool, man. (Sydney)

Winner: Softwar remix, the most high-tech, cleanest sound of them all. It might not be the most dance floor friendly, but it’s a winner in my ears.

Come Back Home remixes

Is Tropical Chilla Black Edit remix: I like the squealy guitars at the beginning, the instrumental bridge and the sexy beats throughout, but I’m not so much of a fan of the echo effects on Trimble’s voice and Sam Halliday’s guitar lines. (London)

Myd remix: Glorification of handclaps and stomping, which isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, then beeping most like Major Lazer (groan). Half a minute goes by before Trimble’s voice even comes in. There is also what I’m sure what was thought as a cool effects tuning that just gets annoying. (Paris)

Winner: No contest here: Is Tropical, hands down.

Something Good Can Work remixes

Ted and Francis remix: Good blend of new (balloon-y synths – think Royksopp) and old (horn section), and making Halliday’s guitar sound oh so dreamy. Nice. (New South Wales, Australia)

The Twelves remix: Guitars and cowbell, baby. Friendly Fires / Holy Ghost! vibes, yo! (Rio de Janeiro)

Winner: This was a tough call because I really liked both. As much as I love the Twelves, gotta give it up to Ted and Francis.

I’m going to give this 2 CD set a 9. Generally I don’t bother with deluxe editions because usually I already have the original album already (and in this case, I’ve got one each of the American and UK versions) so the original rating of 9.5 for ‘Tourist History’ goes down a bit because really, wouldn’t we all prefer new(er) material? (Speaking of which, how about an actual release of ‘Hands Off My Cash, Monty?’) That said, I think the band have chosen a great collection of remixes of their songs and if you like dance music, even if you don’t like Two Door Cinema Club, you’ll find there’s a lot to love in CD 2.

9/10

Trying to keep up with these guys is tough – probably best to subscribe to the blog on their MySpace is your best bet if you want to know the latest.

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