Album Review: MGMT – Congratulations Remixes EP

By on Tuesday, 15th March 2011 at 2:00 pm

This three-track digital EP from MGMT is like a bad dessert after an exceptionally good meal. The EP features three remixes of songs taken from the band’s latest album, ‘Congratulations’, released last year (TGTF review here). Two of the remixes are my favourites off the album (‘Congratulations’ and ‘Siberian Breaks’) plus ‘Brian Eno’.

‘Brian Eno’ was remixed by Japanese electronic artist Cornelius. The original track not only has its own lyrical wit, but also is a very fun song to listen to (or dance to, if you were me). But somehow, this remix sounds hideous. This remix sounds like a music project by a group of primary students trying out different sorts of instruments. The rappy vocals were made really awful as it on purposely, doesn’t go along with the music at all.

The ‘Congratulations’ remix was provided by London based DJ Erol Alkan. The original has so much emotion that Andrew Vanwyngarden memorably teared up during one of its live performances last year. The remix turns such an emotive song into a club blaster. The break of the song also has a slight Oriental twist. (Is it because MGMT are touring Asia soon?)

The last remix on this EP is done by the Ed Banger All-Stars, a group formed by artists on the Ed Banger Records label. ‘Siberian Breaks’, being the longest track on the original album, also has the longest remix at over 10 minutes. The remix starts off with some fine piano chords and the original vocals, both of which I found rather calming together. Everything was lovely before 3:10, when sudden lullabye music kicks in. After that, the remix is starting to go downhill, turning the song into what I reckon would appeal to children more than adults. From 6:18, there is another phase of the remix that is really heavily synthed. It doesn’t even seem to include any elements from the original track, and that part continues on until end. What you would expect from Ed Banger but not MGMT. In short, this remix is so weird as it comprises of an elegant piano part, a lullaby and an electronica outro.

I am really glad that this EP is only going to be released digitally, as the remixes are not that great to be physically released. ‘Congratulations’ is much better on its own without this remix EP.


The EP is available digitally today.

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