Clinic - Free Reign II

There’s a fissure of AM hiss rippling through the remixed record.

Label: Domino

Rating: 6

How do you make warped Liverpudlian Kosmische sound even more demented?

Clinic’s ‘Free Reign’ was a fractal collage of Joe Meek, Amon Düül and Monks stitch-ups; it pulsed and throbbed with a disarming groove, dance music to mutate to. The album’s original mixer, Daniel Lopatin (aka Oneohtrix Point Never), has now taken it upon himself to remix the entire thing, thus: ‘Free Reign II’.

Lopatin intended stamping a ‘burnt 60s/70s dub feel’ sound on the original album. He succeeds; there’s a fissure of AM hiss rippling through the remixed record, most thrillingly on ‘Seamless Boogie Woogie, BBC2 10pm (rpt) II’, Ade Blackburn’s vocals now drowning amid the remnants of his own reverb and the glitchy analogue synths fizzing past. ‘Cosmic Radiation’, the most appositely named track on the original album, now positively rises and ascends from the confines of the album into an intergalactic space all of its own.

But elsewhere, Lopatin’s remixing seems to add little more than surface scratches to an already heavily scratched album. The jerky intensity of ‘You’ and ‘Misty’ is sure upped a notch in their new incarnations but it is really worth a second purchase? The whole thing would have sufficed as a bonus disc rather than the standalone album it is.