Reekin'Structions just might be one of the worst album titles I've ever heard. It's like reconstruction, because it's an album of remixes. And I guess it's reekin' because, erm, they smell?
Who knows. Some clever chap in marketing no doubt. Thankfully the album sounds better than the title smells. What you have here is funk and Italo-style disco re-edits of ten tracks I have to confess I've never heard of. That makes it difficult to gauge just how much work The Revenge (alter ego of Graeme Clarke) has put into the edits but let's give him the benefit of the doubt on that one.
Opener 'Ease Out' by Mid-Air sets the pace nicely - there is a lovely swirling sound that gives the whole thing a warm body, perfect for the squelchy bass and live drums sounds that bring it to life. It's precisely the kind of track that sounds like it has been crafted to open DJ sets - it may not carry you out the back to one of the private rooms for the experience of your life, but you'll certainly have a good time.
From there things become decidedly more funky. Johnny Adams' 'Feel The Beat' is more organic and closer to what I imagine the original sounded like - heavy bass is pushed to the fore but the song is very much still that: a proper song. As mixes go it's subtle and all the better for it.
The album certainly benefits from an eclectic approach - Velvet Hammer's 'Party Down' is stripped back and looped and filtered to within an inch of its life. Hot to the point of almost being able to see the sweat running down the walls it was born to be played it tiny basement bars and back rooms. It has the sound of a track playing when you walk into a small club or a bar and you realise instantly that everyone in there is cooler and having more fun than you.
Even more driving is Vance and Suzzanne's 'I Can't Get Along Without You', which rips the bleeding heart out of the love song it once was and forces it to dance through a tight, muted house number. It's as unsympathetic a remix as this album offers but the contrast just about makes it work with no small thanks to the pay-off of the break.
Whilst Reekin'Structions may ultimately be little more than a series of fairly straight forward disco re-edits there is just no denying the class of those edits. It takes in elements of soul, disco, acid, house and dub and gradually weaves them into each other to create something you can't help but want to move to.