[a]Kid Loco[/a] loves smoking grass – it makes his world “a funny place” – about as much as he hates Air. This eccentric Parisian would no doubt have liked to invite [a]Mogwai[/a], Pulp, Talvin Singh and the High Llamas back to his place for a celebrity toke session but, as next best option, he’s remixed them to [I]sound[/I] as if they’ve been loading herbs into cigarette papers for the last 24 hours. So here’s a collection of Loco‘s extracurricular productions – one which defies your gut reaction that the remix is a tawdry, cynical form. In fact, on this showing, the remix is an adventurous, fun-loving creature. Stoned, for sure, but not so soporific that it can’t divulge good ideas aplenty.
Most dedicate their albums to God or their loved ones, but Loco has opted for Jimi Hendrix and, more pertinently, Andrew Weatherall. Aside from his feelings about Air and grass, what’s best known about Loco is his deference to the curmudgeonly old dance renegade. Back in the early-’90s, working with bands like One Dove and Saint Etienne, Weatherall laid down a potent blueprint for spaced-out dance pop with cooey female vocals and, lo and behold, Loco is partial to that blueprint, too. Saint Etienne make an appearance, Loco‘s rerub of ‘4.35 In The Morning’ positioning the oldest swingers in town in more urbane environs than even they’ve managed. This approach is repeated with The Pastels, investing the previously prosaic ‘The Viaduct’ with a beatific glow.
For a former punk, [a]Kid Loco[/a] doesn’t half like his music molasses smooth these days. Even [a]Mogwai[/a]’s ‘Tracy’ emerges with melodicism reigning over distortion. Pulp‘s ‘A Little Soul’ sounds like it’s being beamed down from a fluffy cloud, while the rather less well-known Gak Sato‘s ‘Penetrate’ might soundtrack a chemically-enhanced tea dance.
Loco‘s prowess lies in ensuring his sonic gumbo is tender but rarely lightweight. As with arch foes Air, there’s a magnitude to his chilling and that’s no less evident here than on his ‘A Grand Love Story’ LP. Oh yes, and in this instance you get soft porn on the cover, too.