Mind Cntrl: Psychic Chasms Possessed
Release Date: Aug 31, 10
Nearly a year ago the young Alan Palomo, sole creator behind Neon Indian’s tunes, exploded onto several top albums lists with his Neon Indian debut, Psychic Chasms. Psychic Chasms took everything right with electronic bedroom pop, and blurred it into a hazy, beautiful mess of a summer-nearly-forgotten kind of album. Psychic Chasms is of the kind that flows so effortlessly through your ears that it can be listened to repeatedly, sometimes without even realizing. This doesn’t mean that the songs lack any sense of distinction, but rather that each song comes together so completely to form the greater whole. With this said, such a strongly connected album can sometimes suffer from allowing others to come in and break up this ease of movement. However, Mind Cntrl: Psychic Chasms Possessed manages to somehow mostly avoid this pitfall, providing NI listeners both new and old with something that stands alone as a great daydream inducing, head bopping, fun inciting, dance pop album.
The album begins with Toro y Moi’s remix of “Deadbeat Summer.” Toro y Moi’s version is a snippet frenzy of the original’s sounds, processed through a range of different filters, with Alan’s lazy Kevin Shields type vocals floating around in a manner even slower than the original. While the remix definitely ups the intensity of the song, lost is the nostalgic charm that was felt so strongly in the original. However, this is substituted for a more “let’s have a good time right now” kind of vibe.
Another favorite off of Psychic Chasms, “Should Have Taken Acid With You,” is remixed by Body Language. This version lets the bass come to the forefront, before allowing the vocals of the original to come through with the oft-repeated title phrase. The middle of the song breaks into a nice bass-empty interlude, before coming back into the simple yet dreamy verse, and ending with some more happily warped beats with some M83-esque “ahhs” and some Cocteau Twins sounding “oohs”. Perhaps it is this song that best takes what the original offers and advances it, offering up even more joy and a stronger exhibition of teenage inhibition than the original.
“Mind, Drips,” remixed by Bibio, strays far from the original, with positive consequence. The track begins by stripping back the excess of synths, allowing the vocals to be carried far away, while still being staked down by deep stop-n-go beats. The song careens into a lighter place as it ends with some crisp, twinkly guitar bits and toy piano.
“Terminally Chill” begins by paying homage to The Ronette’s oft- used “Be My Baby” beat. YACHT then decides to pull the vocals out of the haze, which is quite refreshing, and adds a layer of back-up vocals. “Ephemeral Artery” is great in that it just barely resembles the original, becoming its own twinkly jam. Anoraak’s “Psychic Chasms” manages to clear away some of the all-too-familiar haze, leaving behind a clear view of a very hook-filled, 80’s- inspired jam.