Dead Man Ray
Wire fans need this single. These former Deus pop-rockers have had a double remix job on the so-so cutesy song that leads off their moderately pleasant, yet quite underwhelming Cago album. One remix is a horrible, prissy, pussyfoot, computeroid, lite-funk abortion from Atom, which I had to switch off quick. The great one is by Colin Newman, in total hardass, s——kickin' Read & Burn mode. He's taken a typical precision Steve Albini recording of Dead Man Ray's slightly quirky Landslide and made it live up to its title by cutting out all the band's faffing about and just sending it moving in a straight line. The original song has this completely silly clever-clever bit where the band changes tack and sounds so contrived and false, like some kind of misguided cod soul routine, and Colin's ditched that. Atom takes that section as his starting block so maybe he was always onto a loser. After this, 'new rock' combos who are having trouble firing up revolutions really ought to be knocking on Colin's Swim studio doors and asking him nicely to turn their old chewed pencils into diamonds. Imagine: maybe he could even stop the Strokes from totally sucking and deliver them some of that so-called 'Hot S——.' More impossible things have happened, but not that often.
Graeme Rowland (September, 2004)