CD Review: OMD - Night café

omd nightcafe
Artist: OMD
Title: Night Café
Genre: New Wave / Synth Pop
Release Date: 17th September 2013
Label: BMG


Album Review

This is the third, and apparently, the last single of OMD taken from the latest album ‘English Electric’. The CD (and digital release) is divided in two parts: ‘Night Café’ in five different versions and... five non-album B-Sides, including the never released before ‘Kill Me’. As per ‘Night Café’, we have of course, the album version that really didn't need any further editing or remixing as the song in itself is just brilliant. A pure typical OMD songs in the vein of ‘Secret’ or ‘If You Leave’, with a more melancholic and darker side probably. The four remixes are just what a New Wave fan expect from a remix: just enough experimentation and twittering, extending and fresh production with great respect of the artist's work, keeping some synth lines and not playing too much with vocals.

The more awaited one starts first with Vile Electrodes (who were picked to support OMD on some dates of the tour). Probably the more experimental one with robotic voices, consistent with the spirit of the album and all those Vox Humana and vocoders. A very well thought remix, with a lot of different path explored. The remix surprises you every 1 or 2 minutes. One of my favourites. The ‘Metroland's Nighthawks Remix’ emphasizes the KRAFTWERK touch of the latest OMD production and approaches the song in an extended version spirit. Rhythms are stronger, some soft effects and reconstructions of the vocal on the latest part of the song... Brilliant! The ‘Tayoyo Remix’ brings a new bass line, less atmospheric synths and the work is more focused on rhythm programming. Very smart but less impressive.

The ‘Sin Cos Tan Remix’ is more modern in the sounding, but again, keeps the structure of the song and vocals. Just as the song in itself, borderline between danceable and chill out. Remixers brings some new synth hooks. The synths strings even remind me of Madonna's ‘Vogue’. Another great one. On the B-Sides part, we have ‘Frontline’ that was only available on a 7” vinyl in the collector box version of the album. There was a real demand of fans to have it on a proper CD/Digital version... and here it is. We have here the pure experimental OMD. The one of ‘Dazzle Ships’ and ‘Architecture & Morality’. Instrumental, the track brings some typical choir layers on the top of a strong bass and the ambiance is filled with war sounds (bombs, weapons...). Certainly not a joyful track but it takes you for a real trip.

‘The Great White Silence’ was only released digitally with one of the previous singles but appears (as well as others) first time on CD. This one is a vocal track. Minimal (a low synth pad, a toy box melody and some ambient sounding to start with) and as the title suggests it: cold. Mc Cluskey's voice goes low and intimate. Superb! ‘Kill Me’ is 100% new. The band said it was the first track they worked on when started the new album. Music was written by Paul and lyrics shared between the two pals. It's just a splendid OMD low tempo / melancholic song. As they wrote on their Facebook page, it's when they started using the Vox Humana computer program to create vocals. It's a very good transition between the previous album ‘History Of Modern’ and ‘English Electric’ as the vocal line reminds a lot of ‘Bondage Of Fate’ or ‘New Holy Ground’... and a real pleasure to hear Paul on backing vocals.

‘No Man's Land’ sees OMD plays with what they like the most: huge choirs and various vocals layers, Andy going high, strong basses, drums building over and over... Magical and straight to the heart. Why on earth this song was not on the album (with ‘Kill Me’). ‘Time Burns’ is to put alongside with all the experimental interludes of the album, resurrecting the ghost of ‘Dazzle Ships’ four our listening pleasure. To sum it up, a brilliant way to end this new OMD chapter... let's hope it's not the last as the band has never been so creative.


Tracklist

01. Night Café
02. Kill Me
03. The Great White Silence
04. Time Burns
05. No Man's Land
06. Frontline
07. Night Café (Vile Electrodes 'B-side the C-side' Remix)
08. Night Café (Metroland's Nighthawks Remix)
09. Night Café (taoyoyo Remix)
10. Night Café (Sin Cos Tan Remix)


Line-up (studio)

Andy Mc Clusckey - Vocals, Bass, Synth
Paul Humphreys - Synth, Backing Vocals


Website

http://www.omd.uk.com


Cover Picture

omd nightcafe


Rating

Music: 10
Sound: 10
Total: 10 / 10





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