Several things drew me to the email I received a few months ago about Transatlantic Alliance upcoming release. The first was that its a side project of Deer Park Ranger, a wonderful project we had covered on Post Rock Post in the past and which had appeared on David's end of year list for 2022. The second was that Transatlantic Alliance was also signed with good friends of the blog Post. Recordings and that their music was in line with that label's exacting standards; their 2021 self-titled release is a joyous study in the power of ambience and mood.
And, lastly, the names involved with the remix project of said 2021 release, which we are proud to premiere a track from today, included some truly outstanding names: We Lost the Sea, Holy Fawn, Midas Fall and, yes, Mogwai. The latter were tasked with reimagining the hauntingly gentle and beautiful "Saint Wulfstan" and remix it they have, turning it into a boisterous, noisy affair where once there lay a more contemplative piece. Head on down below to check it out!
Leave it to Mogwai to supercharge such a delicate track with vibrancy and impact while losing none of the fragile emotions which it evokes. The main line of the track has been maintained but loud percussion has been added to punctuate it, turning it into something more bouncy and celebratory than it was. Rich synths have also been added, iterating on the track's main theme and transferring much of the newly-found percussive energy of the track into it. All of this sounds like a big departure from the original sound, and it is, but because the theme itself was cleverly maintained, the track feels like an older, more energetic sibling to "Saint Wulfstan" of 2021. That means that there's another voice hiding beneath the track's louder, remixed through-line, working in conversation with it, echoing the thoughts and images that the original track conveyed. The tension is palatable and highly enjoyable, new but respectful and appreciative of the original work which gave it birth.
In general, these are the principles which have been successfully employed on all of the remixes from this intriguing little release. Some hit on 65daysofstatic adjacent sounds and rhythms, lifting up the original compositions into new spaces of bright luminosity. Others have fragmented the music even further, diving deep into the melancholy and introspection found at its base (like one of my personal favorites, the Christopher Royal King remix of "Gossamer Webs", all disjointed strings and tinkling, breathing instrumentation). This makes this remix album much more than just callback but rather a breathtaking and collaborative effort across careful, talented composers, all working to bring forth new elements from the original work.
If you're intrigued, and you should be, you can head on over here if you're in the EU for vinyl pre-orders and here if you're in the USA, UK and Rest of World. I don't expect this to be the most widely listened to album of 2023 but, for those of us who will take the time for it, it will be one of the year's most interesting explorations of the transformative power of musical collaboration.