Ever since Matthew Dear’s “Dog Days” became a singular sensation in 2003 (it was the most popular single off his debut album Leave Luck to Heaven), producers have been itching to take a crack at the track. Five years later, Dear has synced up with Paris’ Robsoul Recordings to release a top-notch remix collection, one that reflects the chunky house cuts that have been popping up increasingly in his own DJ sets. The Robsoul Remixes is a cross-continental project that mines the connections between Dear’s precision techno-pop and the French label’s expansive funk.
DJ Sneak, playing his role of Chicago partyman to the fullest, engineers “Dog Days” into an eminently ebullient house romper. Acid creaks and squeaks fills in the spaces left by Sneak’s grinning bass line, like the evil tricks of a balloon animal loose in a Moonbounce full of static electricity. Robsoul boss Phil Weeks takes a leaner approach, reviving the unforgettable disco string sweeps of the original “Dog Days,” and stretching them tight against a crackling, frog-hiccup loop. Finally, Chris Carrier commands the B-side with an upbeat, weirdly verdant minimal track, building micro-clips of bongo strikes and hi-hat hisses to teetering heights around seductive fades and stutters of Dear’s vocals.
Depending on whom you ask, Matthew Dear is a DJ, a dance-music producer, an experimental pop artist, a bandleader. He co-founded both Ghostly International and its dancefloor offshoot, Spectral So...check out Matthew Dear's page and other releases