Label: Matador Records Release date: 07/06/10 Official Site It has been almost a year since Yo La Tengo released Popular Songs, their last LP. Now they’re back with a new single, opening song 'Here To Fall', rife with remixes and reworkings (well three of them) that each fail to match the original’s tension or groove. It may be blasphemous to say such things about the remixers, but if they are the ones who must be blamed so be it. I only wish it weren’t so true. Now, I really like Yo La Tengo. I thought Popular Songs was a fine album, not as good as I Am Not Afraid Of You And I Will Beat Your Ass, and nowhere near as bizarre or splendid as Fuckbook, but still good enough to listen to a few dozen times so far. ‘Here To Fall’ is also not a bad song, heavy on strings and Rhodes and heavy on the dark groove – not as good as some openers, but hey there’s some tough competition there. So the bad stuff starts as soon as the original version ends and De La Soul’s remix begins. All minimal and focused on the vocals, the Funky Drummer pattern and disorienting crash cymbal pans just reaffirm my suspicion that they weren’t trying here. Oh, a boring bass synth? Check. Too bad it only comes in at select times that just bog down the rhythm section in a fart-laden swamp of shame. RJD2’s remix also fares pretty poorly here, focusing on what can only be called a “trippy panned flange effect” before kicking in with two, yes TWO, drum sets. The faux ‘70s Motown style assumed here combined with the repetitive guitar and chromatic skronk just fails to take any action, instead happy to rely on the drums for movement…which is a shame considering it’s all just a loop. Sure the fact that it has instrumentation and good use of the string section makes it better than De La Soul’s remix, but I just feel like it isn’t enough to re-energize the vocal. At least it isn’t Pete Rock’s godawful remix. Terrible samples, a terrible rap verse, and an utter lack of self-editing makes this a low light in the Yo La Tengo catalogue. Yet again nothing seems to give a fuck about the actual remix ideal. Rather than ever tooling with things to adopt a new energy, every remix here just tries to be a typical remix in the style of the artist’s expected take. No innovation is to be found, only self-plagiarism and (in the case of Pete Rock’s remix) ego masturbation. I’m going to take an aspirin to get rid of the headache caused by this single. I’m sure I will be the odd man out who hates this, but oh well. Just get this away – this is not why I signed up for when I saw the words YO LA TENGO. Photobucket