Reptilectric is without a doubt, Zoe’s most divisive record yet. You might not agree, but as of today, they’re Mexico’s most important band (putting Café Tacvba aside for obvious reasons), our staff predicts Hello Seahorse! will be ready to earn such a tag in the upcoming years. Reptilectric is hopefully their last galactic album, we’re hoping for them to acquire a first wave mentality so they can free themselves just a little bit. Among the many triumphs of this album, is their entrance to the U.S. market, there’s are plenty of rock bands selling in the American market but only a few (Cerati, Tacvba) can claim to have a transnational label behind them.
Reptilectric Revisitado is a reexamination of their album by renowned remixers and newbies. It’s a bright idea and in a way, a measure of the songs to determine if they’re extensions of Zoe or just product of them. And it’s a nice surprise; it isn’t one of those releases trying get your money just because some known DJ decided to play with it, as a whole, it acquires a persona of its own although never sounding as good as the original material, which was not expected I should say. Let’s start with the worst, that being Sebastian Tellier’s revisit of “Nada”, he’s got the recognition but he makes a tiresome almost empty mix that breaks the song into pieces. Panico’s “Ultimos Dias” and Mad Proffessor’s “Fantasma” try to go very far but barely push these songs a few inches. Dramian & Luriel took “Reptilectric” to a lovable stature, there’s sonic depth all throughout except they kind of forgot about the actual song.
The Glimmers got it right; “Sombras” attains a new form without drowning the original content. Same could be said about Yamil Rezc’s take on the same song or “No Hay Dolor” by Vitamins For You (which could’ve had a change in its title to “No Hay Dolar”). Now, the truly great stuff is brought by Schneider TM’s loop on “Poli” he gives it plenty of air almost making a reggae out it. Also, the always in motion, always dueling “Neandertal” by Mexico’s very own bright Bufi. Finally, there are two very pop but not mainstream reincarnations of “Luna”, the best in the album by far. First, Hello Seahorse! not remixing but covering the beautiful “Luna”, it displays some of Denisse’s most precious qualities as a vocalist and through some changes in the song’s structure, they pretty much own it. But it is Natalia Lafourcade who really hits the ball out of the park, filtering the best out of “Luna” (its depth, its lyrics and Leon’s despaired vocals), and she makes them float in a beautiful suspension that’s picked up by her very own vocals and subtle touches. A nice side to Zoe’s galaxy and not just a fans-only album.