BEST NEW TRACK: REYKO MIXES DOWNTEMPO AND ELECTRO POP WITH A COVER OF “UNBELIEVABLE”
By the time I was lucid enough to remember any song beyond “Twinkle Twinkle, Little Star” and “The Alphabet Song” (they’re the same song), EMF's “Unbelievable” had established itself as a full-on classic. A more-than-a Jock Jam that could serve purpose at a nightclub, sporting event or movie soundtrack. To hear this track slam out of speakers with its unparalleled party-starting energy, one knew they were in for a guaranteed good time. At least a time trying to be just that. For well over thirty years now, one would have been hard-pressed to imagine another version of this mega hit, especially one that’s downtempo, low-energy, and bordering on goth. This idea could almost be… unbelievable.
And yet, here we are. We Are: The Guard favorite REYKO has re-imagined “Unbelievable” in the vein of trip-hop (another early 90’s UK stalwart) channeling Portishead more-so than EMF. They’ve crafted a downtempo cover of a song that has always been full of energy, capturing the mood of the times. No longer does the world feel full of possibility. We know things suck and the best we can do is live through it. In this process of completely re-imagining, this London-based electro pop duo have instilled a whole new existence for a song that had perhaps become so omnipresent as to become forgettable. But not anymore… not after REYKO put their mark.
REYKO - UNBELIEVABLE
There’s been a long storied history of electro-pop covers (and remixes) of classic English tracks becoming the go-to in my record-playing catalogue. Todd Terry’s version of “Missing,” Schneider TM's “The Light 3000” and Fischerspooner’s “The 15th,” come to immediate mind. A reinvention of the track from the ground up (minus lyrics and melody of course) that makes a new version listenable for a new age. No longer is this the sounds of generation lost, but truly of the times.
REYKO has done exactly this. Igor seems to be channeling FINNEAS, with bass so powerful it could knock the frames right off your wall. And Soleil offers breathy vocals that are as deep and seductive as they are ready to take over the world. This is it’s own kind of party. One more suitable for headphones than surrounded by people, but then again-- when’s the last time any of us were out? Let this version of EMF’s “Unbelievable” get you through the rest of quarantine, and then be your main version when this is all over.
From deep within the murky depths of the Los Angeles River emerged a creature: 50% raver, 50% comedian, 10% Robotcop. Kurt Kroeber doesn’t own a dog, operates Soundbleed (the world’s only dance party comedy talk show rave), and is down to party with you. Come up some time and say “Hey dude!” But definitely make sure to casually drop the secret Illuminati password.