Everyone is still getting their heads around Senyawa’s magnificent Alkisah album, and the inspired way in which they released it. Depending on where you reside, and where you get your music fed to you, you might have copped the album in any number of ways. It was released by scores of labels, each edition with different artwork and packaging, and often embellished with additional remixes or other such unique material. A completist’s nightmare, but do completists even exist any more?
Amongst the many unique configurations and spin-offs, Belgian label Les Albums Claus – itself a spin-off of the alternative music venue Les Ateliers Claus – gathered together a separate remix album with a stunning cast that deserves appraisal in its own right. From Sugai Ken’s tender drips and drops to a typically downcast and ominous rhythmic tryst from Tolouse Low Trax, there are a lot of bold ideas that spring from reinterpreting Senyawa’s predominantly intense sound. The ever-brilliant Celine Gillain is perhaps the star of the show though, exercising a brooding restraint for the opening half of her version of ‘Alkisah II’ before opening it up into a dead-eyed stepper down low, and a sparkling FM fantasy up top.