The Big Cover-Up
If there was any doubt that the Norwegian space disco scene was primo record-geek turf, Todd Terje wound up as the ideal man to set you straight. His edits are legendarily transformative, his mixes are deliriously enthusiastic, and his own material from classic Blondie-tweaking single “Ragysh” to his giddy LP It’s Album Time absolutely screams its pop-music fandom to the rafters. Of course Terje would put out a covers record at some point, even if it was technically just an EP’s worth of material (doubled up by a suite of respective remixes). But he curated a wild four-fer for he and his live band to pay homage to. They riff off YMO’s riff off Martin Denny’s “Firecracker” to create a hall-of-mirrors take on orientalist reappropriation and drops some gloriously fat acid 303s over it. They spool up a re-revival of a French disco oddity, Martin Circus’s “Disco Circus,” as a burbling, steam-powered contraption gliding down frictionless, gleaming rails. They cavort through Boney M’s “Baby Do You Wanna Bump” in a concerted effort to make it sound fifteen times squishier and leans so far into the whimsical loopiness of the vocals he turns into a Nicktoon. And they forcibly eject all the pseudo-bossa out of Vangelis’s “La Fête Sauvage,” punting the ’76 suite a decade into the future where it lands as a coke-smuggler speedboat-chase montage. The remixes don’t do much more than amplify these songs’ best qualities, but that’s plenty — Daniel Maloso’s “Do You Wanna Bump” foregrounds the bass, Dan Tyler’s “Firecracker” dubs it up, Prins Thomas’s “La Fête Sauvage” blunts the synths’ serrated edges with warmer conga beats, and Øyvind Morken’s “Disco Circus” goes immensely cavernous.