Ah, a good old CD single—because despite the fact that this U.S. release is labeled an EP, that’s what it is: 4 versions of the same song, including the “album version”, the “radio edit”, and two remixes; and two extra songs destined for a future B-sides collection, or the debut album. Either way, Lovers Who Uncover squeezes extra mileage out of tunes that, mostly, have been around since the band’s debut EP Sing Song was released last October. There’s no problem with maximizing exposure of good music—for the most part, the older songs stand up to the repetition admirably. But if “Lovers Who Uncover” and “Oh, MJ!” turn up on the Little Ones’ debut full-length, suspicions will certainly be raised. Does the band have the creative energy to keep writing tunes with the liveliness of the title track?
If it’s being up-to-date the band’s shooting for, they’ve got a few remixes to fuel the claim—and neither are bad at all. Crystal Castles’ version is pure 2007 electro, pinging with pulsing beat and an intermittent swirl of high synth bleeps. And there’s CSS’ more frenetic, edgy version, all repeating tinkle and prominent bass. Neither of these, though they might serviceably ignite an indie club, really matches the joy of the original. The only new song here is “There’s a Pot a Brewin’”, a strong, funky composition that’s endlessly familiar—it reminded me of an upbeat Paul Simon song like “Me and Julio Down by the School Yard”—but manages to be harmonically interesting and beat-driven (cowbells, yes) at the same time. So while “Lovers Who Uncover” is undoubtedly successful as a single, there’s cause for a beat: do the Little Ones have what it takes to blow us away on the album scale? We’ll just have to wait and see. For now, enjoy the carefree pop for what it is—if we forget the song tomorrow, at least we were happy today.
// Notes from the Road
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