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In Sea Remixes
CD 2010 | Silber 080
14 tracks, 72 minutes
$12 ($18 international, $5 download (256 kbps, ~135 megs))
We've loved everything we've heard thus far from DeRosa. He's one of those artists you can always depend on to come through with intriguing quality music with a conscience. This is an individually numbered limited edition CD (only 500 copies). TOP PICK.
~ Babysue

Remixes of the entire In Sea album by Ramses III, Landing, ThisQuietArmy, Mason Jones, Keith Canisus (Rumskib), Yellow6, Declining Winter (Richard of Hood), Suckers, Remora, Summer Cats (Slumberland Records), & more.

: Press release

Track Listing:
I Am (The Ice) - Sky Burial Remix by Rameses III, LYMZ - Remix by Slicnaton, Hollow Earth Theory - Remix by Summer Cats, A Plague of Frost (In The Guise of Diamonds) - Remix by Al Qaeda, In Sea - Remix by Mason Jones, Onward! - Remix by Yellow6, Young Light - Remix by Planar, Autumnal - Remix by Keith Canisius, Corpse Reviver No. 2 - Remix by ThisQuietArmy, Instill - Remix by Remora, When We're Ghosts - Remix by James Duncan, Am I Demon? - Remix by Declining Winter, Am I Demon? - Remix by Pan/Suckers, Am I Demon? - Remix by Landing

Really mellow album of remixes from lots of artists of Aarktica's cool post-rock/folky/ambient album. Really great, while Aarktica's album had this very large atmospheric feel, the remixes are sort of like personal interpretations of the record into 14 individual separate landscapes. Sometimes a bit Boards Of Canada-y. Some more ambient, some more beat-based, some more vocal-based. AND three remixes of an acoustic Danzig's "Am I Evil?" Fun fact: this dude has a digital "Live at KUCI" EP from 2005.
~ Matt Buga, KUCI

This year saw the release of the companion remix album, simply entitled In Sea Remixes. This well-stocked appendix contains some very fine material as well, especially since all these different remixers bring their own influences to the board, which results in a broad and accessible album that retains a great deal of the unique atmosphere of the original. The basic line is still ambient of course, as is illustrated by Rameses III‘s relaxing rendition of “I Am (The Ice)”. However, it is when these new influences shine through that the strength of this album comes to the fore. A perfect example is Mason Jones, adding subtle drums and treatments to “In Sea”, taking the track to a different, but equally brilliant plane. Idem the Planar remix of “Young Light”, where minimal rhythms and newly added female vocals evolve the song beyond its original form. Of course, not all of these remixes are as remarkable as these, but the general flow of the album is preserved excellently. It ends, as mentioned with a trio of remixes of “Am I Demon?”, each of which is more than worthwhile. The Declining Winter add a cold, windswept touch to the song with some strings and additional vocals. The one by Suckers goes for a minimal beat and subdued distortion of the original vocals, resulting in a quirky, muted new version. The Landing remix, finally, opts for a simpler approach with delays and reverbs, delivering a slightly more dreamy reworking.
~ Evening of Light

Back in Vital Weekly 703 I discussed 'In Sea' by Aarktica and was not blown away by it. It lacked variation mostly, in my opinion. Jon DeRosa, the behind behind Aarktica played guitar, lots of echo and reverb and a bit of singing. I'm not sure why this album needed a remix treatment, perhaps because 'the material on the original lent itself well to reworking', and surely its a nice passtime to create remixes. Perhaps it will boast the sales of the original too. Lots of names here of which I never heard, like Planar, Al Qaeda (well, I heard of the other one), Pan, Landing, Ramses II, as well as some I recognized such as Mason Jones, Slicnaton, Remora and Yellow6. Up until the eleventh piece its all fairly ok in terms of remixing. Everybody seems to be emphasizing the ambient structures set forward on the original, sometimes with a bigger role for a guitar, or for effects or for the vocals, but it all makes a pretty decent listening. Not great, not bad, not highly original. The James Duncan remix then takes everything into a whole new territory, with a house based remixed. Totally out of place, but perhaps therefore quite alright. Declining Water, an off-shoot of Hood, has a nice piece for strings, following that, Pan brings in drum machines again. Those three, all at the end, make the right sort of wrong moves: they take the original into a whole new area, which I believe to be the best thing for a remix album. Attract a new audience to your music. Throughout quite an alright compilation, quite pleasant to listen.
~ Frans de Waard, Vital Weekly

Even though you know something to be an obvious truth...sometimes is just feels reassuring to see it in print. We've been big fans of Jon DeRosa (the man who is Aarktica) for quite some time now...and we've always had the distinct feeling that this man is driven first and foremost by the desire to create. As such, it felt particularly nice reading the press release that accompanied this which DeRosa validated some of our feelings. In Sea Remixes features fourteen remixes by artists Ramses III, slicnation, Summer Cats, Al Qaeda, Mason Jones, Yellow6, Planar, Keith Caisius, thisquietarmy, Remora, James Duncan, Declining Winter, Pan, and Landing. The original Aarktica mixes were already strange and it comes as no surprise that the same is true for these versions. We've loved everything we've heard thus far from DeRosa. He's one of those artists you can always depend on to come through with intriguing quality music with a conscience. This is an individually numbered limited edition CD (only 500 copies). TOP PICK.
~ Babysue

One of 2009's best releases gets the remix treatment from loads of talented musicians. Drop everything and buy this.
Jon DeRosa's elegiac masterpiece of an ambient-drone record In Sea got me through a very busy semester of school last year. The weight of the music, DeRosa's amazing story, and the therapeutic nature it had on me as I sat up writing paper after paper led to an easy place on my best of 2009 list. Now, Silber Records is graciously releasing a glorious remix album no more than 3 months after its initial release. The remix album is a tricky feat to pull off. First, the source material has to be strong enough to retain its core attributes while withstanding radical tonal and textural changes.
A big check in that box.
Second, the contributers have to alter the original recording enough to warrant another listen to a song you have spun through over a dozen times.
Put another check there.
Those said changes have to alter the song enough to make you look at it in another light, recognizing things that you missed and opening the song to limitless possibilities.
Three for three.
Fourth, make sure Prefuse-73 is on there.
Oh man, so close.
While Scott Herren may be absent, Aarktica's talented friends more than make up for this. Remixes include contributions from Al Qaeda (fellow non-SLC moondial tape contributers) who take "A Plague of Frosts" and underscore it with post-industrial percussion and haunting field-recordings in the vein of Odd Nosdam's eerie "Burner" off Level Live Wires. My favorite remixes are by Planar and Keith Canisuis who take previous wordless songs and sing over them, totally owning the song and changing its very meaning. I have an unhealthy obsession with the Keith Canisuis remix of "Autumnal", I love his decidedly 80's take on the song, transforming the subtle guitar lines into cheesy 80's synth lines and gorgeously-weird keyed up vocals. I don't know very much about this Dutch artist, but I expect to be delving into his back catalogue very soon. Other contributers include but are not limited to: Aidan Baker-collaborator-ThisQuietArmy, the skittering electronic percussion of yellow6, Mason Jones, the pastoral field recordings of Summer Cats. TOME favs Remora, Declining Winter, James Duncan, Ramses III, etc... Not to be missed.
~ Ryan Hall, Tome to the Weather Machine

Discovering In Sea on the cusp of winter paid some enormous dividends. Like an ode to the silence and stillness that snow brings, Jon DeRosa's latest full-length will always fit my early November memory of wandering Chinatown at 1AM; its careful drones and webs of guitar grimacing between buildings and sprinkling a first frost. What could’ve scored mountainous treks or, I don’t know, collapsing icebergs, ended up soundtracking my walk through concrete grays, which would seem like a waste if In Sea’s mood – graceful yet downtrodden – didn’t compel such honest surroundings. Those who, like me, basked in Aarktica’s cross-breezes of emotional numbness have unintentionally reaped another bonus: the eventual thaw.
A topic of discussion since the release of its parent record, In Sea Remixes collects a new take on each album track plus an appendix of ‘Am I Demon’ remixes initially plotted for a separate EP release. With a slew of talented contributors (among them Rameses III, Yellow6, and The Declining Winter), In Sea Remixes also boasts surprises uncommon of its recycled blueprint. Namely, this collection defies my usual disinterest in remixes. Whereas most remix compilations uproot sequencing and mood in favour of track-privatization (in other words, the act of artists covering their own asses, final product be damned), In Sea Remixes flows like the original record if Aarktica had been inspired by IDM and electronic pop. That spray of optimistic beams first borne on ‘Young Light’ gets vocals and a hazy makeover courtesy of Planar while Mason Jones reworks the title track with crisp post-rock percussion that compliments DeRosa’s echo-drenched guitars. If those aforementioned remixes successfully incorporate cousin-genres to In Sea’s rippling drones, Keith Canisius’ take on ‘Autumnal’ gets downright ballsy, crafting a subtle dance-beat with pitch-shifted, cut-up vocals. It’s a loose translation of the original but also one of the record’s top tracks. The greatest of these many revelations is that In Sea Remixes, despite its variety, flows like a more vivid, spontaneous companion, one which praises its source material while evoking the sounds of spring. From the melting tones of ‘LYMZ’ (by Slicnaton) and chirping birds of ‘Hollow Earth Theory’ (by Summer Cats) to the laptop beats and warm piano of ‘Onward!’ (by Yellow6), these remixes celebrate an end of hibernation, not to mention the begging question of where Jon DeRosa plans to go next.
At the risk of setting a precedent, it’s worth noting that not everything here comes up roses. James Duncan's remix of ‘When We're Ghosts’ is likely the most adventurous, what with its club-ready beats and random “fuck you!” snippets, but it nearly makes a late-bid to deride what is, for the most part, an exception to the Remix-Album-Rule. In these rare instances of lost focus, it’s the heavier contributions – deep drones by ThisQuietArmy and collaged chaos by Al Qaeda - that rope the release back on par with Aarktica’s densely shaped moods. And remaining true to the feel of In Sea isn’t so hard when DeRosa’s performances still sizzle beneath each of these renditions. A remix album that stands by its inspiration while reaching in several fruitful directions? I could get used to this.
~ Skeleton Crew Quarterly

It’s nice to revisit this music by Jon DeRosa through the aural lens of the likes of Planar, Keith Canisius, Mason Jones, Slicnaton, Al Qaeda, Ramses III, Thisquietarmy, Landing, Remora, Declining Winter, Yellow6, and others. Whether they add violin (12), vocals (1, 7, 12,), or beats (6, 7, 8, 11 13), these remix artists take the ambient beauty and change it up nicely.
~ Pax Humana, KFJC

Last year’s In Sea, the most recent full-length of Jon DeRosa’s Aarktica project, was, at once, warmly familiar and curiously novel. Its tracks certainly exhibited the particular sound that DeRosa has been cultivating for years under the Aarktica banner, a three-way intersection of drone, ambient, and intimate bedroom pop, but its means were austere, eschewing the electronics and guest-spots that characterized previous records in favor of only his voice, guitars, and antique pump organ. It was, as the album’s press release states, the collection of the sounds that had “haunted his head for years,” which speaks volumes for an artist whose sense of solitude is often apt to leave listeners feeling voyeuristic guilt long after discs have stopped spinning.
One might find it curious, then, that DeRosa would so quickly hand over his most personal record to others for a remix project, but In Sea Remixes evinces a fellowship and, more importantly, shared aesthetic direction among the artists that prevents it from being just another hokey throwaway and, instead, enshrines it as a fitting companion piece to the original. In fact, you couldn’t blame a listener unaccustomed with In Sea for confusing this album for a bona fide Aarktica offering. There’s a coherence throughout Remixes of the type of tasty ambiguity on which records such as Pure Tone Audiometry and Bleeding Light were predicated, with a group of post-rock mavens further abstracting DeRosa’s already slippery drones into even hazier textures.
“I Am (The Ice)” was a still track already, and Rameses III’s “Sky Burial” remix sounds like another angle of the same iceberg. In Sea’s most emotionally direct song (aided by the fact that it was one of only two to feature voice), “Hollow Earth Theory,” is here given a more atmospheric treatment via Summer Cats, who allow bird and sea sounds to quietly jostle DeRosa’s electronically treated voice for prominence in the mix. Further on the ambient front, ThisQuietArmy render “Corpse Reviver No. 2? into a dirge every bit as ominous as its title. James Duncan and Remora dance “When We’re Ghosts” and “Instill,” respectively, to the end of kitsch and back, offering Remixes a necessary levity amidst the otherwise impenetrable solemnity. Keith Canisius’s approach to “Autumnal,” a certain high-point on the album, bridges the two most present styles on Remixes–ambient and dance–into a twinkly piece reminiscent of Boards of Canada and other IDM artists. In Sea’s most curious track, a stripped-down and personalized cover of Danzig’s “Am I Demon?,” is thrice reinterpreted, by Landing, Pan, and Declining Winter (Richard Adams of Hood), each track emerging not simply as DeRosa’s original with a few sonic fingerprints but as intimate works of their own merit.
In Sea Remixes is pleasant throughout, even if its versions are occasionally on the safe side (ambient into ambient isn’t exactly an unpredictable or particularly imaginative leap). Other participants include Slicnaton, Al Qaeda, Mason Jones, and Planar. The record is available through Silber Records as a limited edition CD (500 copies) or digital download.
~ Jacob Price, Delusions of Adequacy

First off, let me confess that remix albums typically bore and irritate me – like listening to the 20 minute 12” dance mix of some 2:00 pop dittie. They usually rob all the life out of the original, turning it into scrambled, unrecogniseable mush. But Aarktica’s Jon DeRosa was involved firsthand with this project, and admits his originals (which we reviewed here) were perfectly suited to the remix concept, so much so that the artists actually reworked his songs, rather than simply rearranging a few notes here and there.
It also helps that many of the remixers work in the same genre/style as De Rosa (which I’ve labeled “snorecore”, though I know Phil in particular is a big fan and considers that a little disparaging!), e.g., Ramses III, Yellow6, and Terrascope/stock faves, Landing, Hood (courtesy Richard’s Declining Winter project) and Mason Jones (late of SubArachnoid Space), that the new versions are interesting tweaks rather than bastardised, “well, I think you should have mixed it this way” pronouncements.
Such is the case with Ramses III’s ‘Sky Burial Remix’ of original album opener, ‘I Am (The Ice).’ Both float along like ice bergs in the mid-Atlantic searching for unsuspecting cruise ships. Summer Cats take one of De Rosa’s two vocal tracks (‘Hollow Earth Theory’) and add several layers of echoes, crashing waves, and flocks of seagulls to put the listener in a lifeboat in the middle of the ocean – an entirely new experience that adds an aura of tension to the original ballad. Al Qaeda add waves of industrial machinery to ‘A Plague of Frost (In The Guise of Diamonds),’ sadly burying one of the album’s most peaceful and meditative tracks under a maelstrom of pseudo-explosions and mushroom clouds of shredded guitars – sort of what I was afraid of when I first heard the word “remix.” And Mason Jones adds a drum track to the title track that I’m not sure I agree with, although the dichotomy is interesting – like catching some Z’s  in a hammock on a summer day while your next door neighbour is building a treehouse in his backyard. Keith Canisius does the same with ‘Autumnal,” condensing the guitar lines to sound not unlike Robert Smith’s gothic arpeggios with The Cure. He even adds lyrics, thus extending the track an additional two minutes and, like Yellow6 (below) creates an entirely new song. And I can certainly do without James Duncan’s disco remix of ‘When We Were Ghosts.’
Elsewhere, Yellow6 mutes the gorgeously cascading guitar arpeggios from ‘Onward!’ and intensifies the echoed effect like a newbie who just discovered a wah-wah pedal. He also doubles the track’s original length, adding more drum fx, glitches and piano strolling to create an entirely different song. This one might have been more effective on a tribute album rather than a remix, wherein I see the artist’s role as one of refiner, modifyer – stretching the original into new territories, but essentially using the same backing track instead of creating something in his own image.  It should still sound like an Aarktica track, not a Yellow6 track. The project concludes with three rearrangements of Danzig’s ‘Am I Demon?’ Richard Hood (aka Declining Winter) adds violin and an even more haunting vocal track, Pan goes for the bleeps and bloops electronic approach, and our friends in Landing match DeRosa’s stark, aimless, almost hypnotic interpretation with one of the album’s finest arrangements.
An interesting pseudo-collaboration that will be of interest to DeRosa’s fans to see how his music can be transformed in the hands of some of the current crop of “old men playing in the same circles as Aarktica.” Most of the laidback, almost melancholic vibe of the original is lost, so fans of DeRosa’s return to Aarktica’s more glacial arrangements may have to listen with a grain of salt, but newbies are certainly encouraged to pick up the original and A/B the tracks as we did. It’s an ear-opening experience and an education in musical interpretation and extrapolation.
~ Jeff Penczak, Terrascope Online

Remix albums have been around for donkey’s years, beginning in Jamaica when popular albums were often issued in a largely vocal free dub version. Post-disco, things often got ridiculous with discs containing seemingly dozens of rejigged versions of often the same track. Whilst many had their merits (there’s a long list of tracks whose original versions pale into insignificance next to their better known remixes), many were pretty tedious to sit through, and the worst just reeked of cash being squeezed out of gullible fans.
Like the poor, it seems they will always be with us, though. Very few are things you’ll ever sit through more than a couple of times. Often, when an entire album is handed out to a disparate group of artists to work their magic, there is a very uneven quality about the project – from the inspired to the workmanlike. Too often, too, the result is a record that has no sense of flow, but that jumps around from style to style – fine in the download era when you want just a couple of the tracks, but a failure as an album.
Jon DeRosa’s In Sea came out around six months ago. It had its weak links where the music lacked much identity, but there was plenty of strong material. The remix album more or less sticks with the same running order, with only the closing I Am Demon presented in more than one version. What’s remarkable about it is that it hangs together so consistently, despite many of the tracks sounding radically different to the originals.
Sky Burial’s I am (The Ice) is glacially pure ambient with the grit removed from its parent version, but as the album progresses, things get dirtier and darker with fuzzed beats and filthy bass making their presence felt heavily for the first time on Mason Jones’ radical reconstruction of the title track. There is a bright and clean interlude in the centre, with the lush electronic pop ballad Young Light and the Cocteau Twins like Autumnal before the fog and drone return with a vengeance on Corpse Reviver No.2. Danzig’s I Am Demon is transformed into a triptych. The Declining Winter mix is a kind of folk-psyche thing with bagpipe drones as opposed to the horror movie atmospherics of the Pan/Suckers version. The Landing Winter version plays it pretty much straight.
Remora’s remix of Instil is the only track that jars. Not because it’s no good, but simply because it’s just so out of step with the rest of the record. He’s transformed it into a gritty disco/house thing that sounds great, but just feels like it belongs in other company.
So does In Sea Remixes pass the test and stand up as a work in its own right, or just exist as an interesting alternative to the main record? I think it does. In fact I think in a lot of ways it’s the more satisfying collection.
~ Music Musings & Miscellany

I’ll come right out and say it: I’m not a big fan of remixes. I understand the need and desire to pay some homage to music that you find inspiring and beautiful. And given our society’s predilection for recontextualizing and reiterating pop culture in general, remixing sort of seems to be the post-modern de rigueur thing to do. But maybe I subscribe too heavily to the auteur idea for artists in general, that the vision put forth by the original artist is the authoritative one—that it’s canon, if you will—and that other versions are, therefore, pretenders to the throne.
That’s one huge generalization, of course, and I don’t mean to whitewash all remixes in existence, nor do I intend to dismiss those with mad remixing skills. But again, generally speaking, if I have to choose between picking up an album of remixes, and getting an album of brand new material—either by the remixer(s) or the remixee(s)—new material will win out almost every time. I yearn for something new, something fresh, something original—and remixes just never quite leave me satisfied beyond the initial piquing of curiosity.
Which brings us to In Sea Remixes, a collection of remixes of Aarktica’s In Sea. And in addition to my normal dislike of remixes, I was especially anxious regarding this particular collection, for two reasons.
First is simply that I like In Sea a lot (I rank it, along with No Solace In Sleep, as my favorite Aarktica disc), and I simply don’t like running the risk of seeing (or hearing, as the case may be) things that I like and value being… mishandled.
Second, I was concerned simply due to the nature of Aarktica’s music. It’s one thing to remix a pop hit, with its numerous hooks and crooks to latch onto and send spiralling off into new directions. But In Sea‘s music is, for the most part, as removed from any form of “pop” music as you can imagine. Remixing ambient music feels like a rather pointless exercise, unless you treat the source material as less raw materials to remix and more a canvas on which to create something new.
Not surprisingly, I find that the most successful and memorable remixes on In Sea Remixes are those that do just that: that take Jon DeRosa’s icily spectral sounds and incorporate them into songs that are less remix and more collaboration towards a new original.
For example, Rameses III’s “Sky Burial” remix of “I Am (The Ice)” takes the original’s ethereal sounds and shimmering guitars, and masterfully inverts them. The original suggested the Arctic sun peeking up over the horizon after a long, dark winter; the remix suggests the polar (npi) opposite. The guitar sounds are stretched out, becoming more ominous and amorphous. Meanwhile, the sighing vocals suggest cold winter winds beginning to make their presence felt as another stretch of wintry night sets in. Sky burial, indeed. The two versions may be dissimilar in tone and outlook, but they are both arresting, captivating examples of glacial ambient drift.
Mason Jones’ remix of “In Sea” also contains spare elements of the original, but sets them against that age-old remixing tool—fresh beats—to solid effect. Impressive—and surprising—considering that Aarktica’s music is at its best when it’s most beatless. And again, we have an interesting inversion of the original. There, the song’s warmth came from the very human sound of DeRosa’s hands sliding along his guitar’s strings. But with the remix, the warmth comes from the mirage-like waves of guitar that are cast off from the song’s rhythmic core and sent spinning off into the ether a la some desert vision.
Finally, Planar’s remix of “Young Light” trades surging guitar riffs for arpeggiated synths, beguiling female vocals, and beats. It’s one of the most dramatic reworkings on the disc—beat out only by Remora’s vulgar-yet-humorous electro/disco/hip-hop take on “Instill”—and one that instantly grabs my attention every time it comes on.
Unfortunately, other tracks are less memorable. Al Qaeda’s remix of “A Plague of Frost (In The Guise of Diamonds)” takes one of In Sea‘s most subtle tracks and simply ramps up its levels for nearly 8 minutes with some extra noise and feedback tossed in for good measure. The result is a giant, ugly slab of sound that grows more oppressive and uninteresting with each passing second. ThisQuietArmy does something similar to “Corpse Reviver No. 2”, which is little more than a collection of quasi-power electronics, gloomy synths, and funereal beats drizzled over the original’s ponderous guitar tones.
James Duncan’s remix of “When We’re Ghosts” does little to deviate from the original aside from fragmenting its ragged noise bursts and ping-ponging them all over the place. Finally, the three remixes of Aarktica’s cover of Danzig’s “Am I Demon” leave little to no impression. They come, they go, and I promptly forget about them—which is a double shame seeing as how one of the remixers is The Declining Winter (and their version feels particularly tossed off).
All in all, In Sea Remixes offers little new insight into Aarktica’s music or any of the remixers. There are some fine tracks on the disc, no doubt about that (Rameses III’s remix is particularly haunting). The disc is at its best when a remixer’s muse melds with Aarktica’s original vision and something truly unique emerges. But In Sea Remixes is ultimately a mixed bag, little more than a curiosity piece in my collection.
~ Jason Morehead, Opus

First up are the “In Sea Remixes” (Silber 079) of 12 tracks (14 if you count the fact that one of them features on three different remixes) culled from the 10-year career of John DeRosa’s Aarktika  This is ambient drone music out of the top drawer.
“I Am (The Ice)” is the suitably glacial and gorgeous opener courtesy of the ever excellent Ramses III and is immediately trumped by Slicnation’s almost flat-line take on “LYMZ”. At this point you’re glad you are not driving the car as none of this is particularly conducive to operating heavy machinery or any activity that requires alert concentration. By the time the twittering birds herald in “Hollow Earth Theory” you’ve been transported to somewhere beautiful and where you will remain until you are returned oh so gently to the here and now at the end of the third gorgeous helping of “I Am Demon” after some 70 minutes of out of body experience (aside from the disco sound of “When We’re Ghosts”). Moving on from the first three tracks, “A Plague of Frost” has a certain menace and urgency about it (as you might expect from someone or thing named Al Qaeda) whilst Mason Jones’ take on the title track heralds in muted percussion, which is replicated on many of the subsequent tracks. Other highlights include the deliciously sinister “Corpse Reviver No 2”, the quite majestic “Instill” and my own favourite interpretation of “I Am Demon” by Declining Winter (the other two are also recommended). This is definitely one to take with you into the flotation tank (but remember to skip the disco track). Sweet dreams!
~ Ian Fraser, Terrascope

Aarktica’s 2009 album In Sea was Jon DeRosa’s most ambient/atmospheric soundscape-oriented album in a while. It may be those more abstract qualities that make it more open to interpretation by remixers. There’s a lot of mystery within the music, plenty of directions it can take you and you can take it. Yet it’s also a tribute to the talent level and artistic vision of the 14 remixers that makes In Sea Remixes such a rewarding experience.
These versions generally maintain the tone of the original album – calm, anticipatory, warm. There’s no putting DeRosa’s voice over a generic dance track, or anything like that. But still there is variety. To begin the CD, Rameses III take on “I Am (The Ice)”, using a small vocal intonation (a breath or sigh almost) as an incantation, while the icey atmosphere floats around. Al Qaeda plays up the apocalyptic dread in “A Plague of Frost (In the Guise of Diamonds)”, using a chaotic mix of distorted somethings, would-be field recordings from the apocalypse. Yellow 6 seems to almost pause “Onward!” in mid-air before transitioning into a casual saunter. Keith Canisius takes “Autumnal” in his typically lush dream-pop direction. James Duncan goes the dance-party route with “When We’re Ghosts”, but it’s a pretty strange dance party still.
The other 9 remixers are up to equally interesting things, including three very different takes on Aarktica’s take on Danzig’s “I Am Demon”. The stern incisiveness of that song is placed in a gorgeous fog by Landing to end the album, on the right note of bleak beauty.
~ Dave Heaton, Erasing Clouds

Nuova release per la band capitanata da Jon DeRosa, dopo un periodo di silenzio; l'intento della nuova release è proprio quello di tornare ad affrontare la musica in maniera più tranquilla e senza rivolgere l'occhio costantemente alle classifiche e al gradimento del pubblico.
D'obbligo la sbirciatina agli artisti che hanno collaborato per questa release della Silber, e i nomi sono notevoli: da diversi artisti emergenti (Planar, Summer Cats, ecc) fino a gruppi che hanno già collaborato con DeRosa quali Yellow6 e Remora.
E in questo, i remix presentati da 'In Sea' effettivamente non seguono nessuna moda, alternando elettronica pura, ad ambient noise, a electro pop non dissimile da quello suonato proprio dagli Aarktica. Sostanzialmente è stato remixato l'intero LP 'In Sea', con gran parte dei pezzi riceventi un singolo trattamento ma tutti graziati da un tocco personale che rende la compilation un qualcosa di unico rispetto all'album.
Curiosità, invece, la cover di Am I Demon? di Danzig che compare in ben tre versioni; la più notevole è sicuramente quella di Declining Winter (artista con cui DeRosa avrebbe voluto collaborare da tempo), che taglia gran parte del testo e la trascina avanti con una minacciosa viola e noise di sottofondo quasi a mò di temporale. Pezzo particolare è anche la rivistazione di When we're ghosts da parte di James Duncan, trasformata in un pezzo quasi dance/post-punk.
Insomma, questo è il modo con cui dovrebbe essere ripensato un album: interpretazioni personali che aggiungono alla visione originale dell'artista. Perfetto per i fan degli Aarktica, consigliato per gli altri.
~ Damiano Gerli, Kathodik

Ein Remixalbum zu besprechen ohne das Original zu kennen ist immer eine etwas heikle Sache, und im Falle von AARKTICAS „In Sea Remixes“ landete der Tonträger auch eher zufällig auf meinem Tisch. Dass ich das Thema dennoch nicht unter selbigen fallen lassen möchte ist, soviel vorweg, der Qualität der Arbeiten geschuldet, und immerhin wurde die Band des Amerikaners Jon DeRosa im deutschsprachigen Blätterwald bislang auch sträflichst vernachlässigt. Grund genug, das Werk etwas provisorisch wie ein Phänomen zwischen Album und Compilation zu betrachten und dennoch unter die Lupe zu nehmen.
Ob das beim schlicht „In Sea“ betitelten Original ebenso ist, kann ich wie gesagt nur erahnen – im Falle der von teilweise prominenter Hand überarbeiteten Fassung jedenfalls ist ein gewisses narratives Moment nicht zu leugnen, welches aufgrund des Titels nun leicht mit Seefahrts-Assiziationen gefüllt werden kann. Die vierzehn Stücke nehmen einen kaum zu überhörenden Verlauf, der seinen Ausgangspunkt bei einer ambienten, tagträumerischen Atmosphäre nimmt, bevor es zu schön wird einen Exkurs in etwas poppigere Gefilde unternimmt und sich der kurzen Freude am Tanz hingibt, sich dann in metallener Schwere einen meditativen Gegenpol erarbeitet um schlussendlich auf ein offenes Ende hinzusteuern: eine die Wortlosigkeit ablösende Einmündung in herkömmlichen Songlyrics, die aber zugleich eine adaptierende Verneigung vor DeRosas Idol DANZIG darstellt und auf rationale Weise gleich dreimal die Frage nach dem Irrationalen stellt – „Am I Demon?“ Das eher dem Tagtraum zugeneigte Kapitel beginnt gleich mit einem Höhepunkt des Werks, die Type Records-Exponenten RAMSES III sind vermutlich auch gerade die richtigen, um „I Am (The Ice)“ zu dem Reich wundgescheuerter Träume zu machen, als das es sich hier gebärdet. Wundgescheuert deshalb, weil der entspannte Klangteppich aus Keyboard- und Gitarrenflächen immer wieder durch kratzige und kantige Störfaktoren unterwandert wird, die am Ende aus der Reserve der Subtilität ins Bewusstsein dringen und ein allzu glückseliges Abdriften unterbinden. In eine ähnliche Stoßrichtung tendieren die Bearbeitungen von Newcomern wie SLICNATION und SUMMER CATS, erstere durch die nie vollends einschmeichelnde spacig-metallische Klangmauer, die sich wie ein von Hochfrequenztönen durchwirktes Harmoniumdrone anhört, letztere durch ein nun beinahe deplaziert wirkendes Idyll aus Vogelstimmen und Brandung, lokalisiert irgendwo in den Hohlräumen unseres Planeten. Die rhythmischeren Abschnitte beginnen zunächst gedämpft, und der Reisende scheint sich nicht ganz sicher zu sein, ob er diese Richtung überhaupt einschlagen möchte, zumindest deutet das Mason Jones’ Überarbeitung des Titelsongs mit seiner exzessiven Nutzung von rückwärts gespielten Passagen an. Die altgedienten YELLOW6 gehen den Weg vielleicht etwas selbstsicherer weiter, aber Straightness wird auch hier nur in Anführungsstrichen geboten mittels Tremolo und gebrochen kollagierten Rhythmen, die wie ein in Beton gegossenes, halb lahmes Stakkato nur mithilfe eines Klaviers mit Leben gefüllt werden. Los lässt der Reisende erst mit dem asiatischen Triphop von PLANAR, bei dem zum ersten Mal Frauengesang zu hören ist. Die Bremse der Schwerkraft ziehen dann THISQUIETARMY, und die verrauschte Gitarrenwalze, die wie eine Steppenhexe auf Valium immer noch eher dezent als brachial durch die Gehörgänge rollt, markiert dann auch den zweiten Höhepunkt der CD. Neben weiteren Zeitlupenriffs und einem etwas deplazierten Dance-Hit sorgen dann drei Überarbeitungen des besagten DANZIG-Klassikers in dritter Instanz für alternative Schlussgebungen. DECLINING WINTER setzt auf organischen Klang und Abstraktion, PAN besinnt sich trotz mehrstimmigen Gesangs auf das Danziger Urbild, LANDING lässt dann alles in einer rauchigen Wolke ausklingen.
Dies ist kein Sampler, auch wenn sich meine Beschreibung vielleicht so anhört. Wer interessiert ist, sollte sich auch (so wie ich nun) auf die Suche nach dem Original machen. Empfehlenswert allen, die gerne ihre Schuhe anstaunen, noch nicht genug haben von der vermeintlichen Überwindung des Rock mit eigenen Mitteln und für die Dröhnung und Tagtraum keine Gegensätze darstellen.
~ Black Magazine

Nuova produzione in edizione limitata quest'anno per il newyorkese John DeRosa, alias Aarktica, con il suo "In Sea Remixes": rivisitazione dell'ultimo progetto "In Sea" al fianco della Silber Records. Una musicalità speciale quella di Aarktica, onde ed oscillazioni sonore sono l'impasto musicale preferito dall'artista americano; nel 1999 la perdita dell'udito da un orecchio ha colpito la sua sensibilità musicale, con la collaborazione occasionale di alcuni autori, ha elaborato un percorso artistico differente e di un certo impatto.
Ecco allora la rivisitazione da parte di alcuni artisti di "In Sea Remixes", diretta ad attuare un esperimento a più mani, infatti tra i partecipanti troviamo Rameses III, Summer Cats, Mason Jones, Yellow6, Keith Canisius, James Duncan, Remora, senza dimenticare il lavoro sulla cover "Am I Demon" di Danzing, grazie al supporto di Declining Winter, Pan (of Suckers) e Landing. Il risultato è una grande atmosfera creata appunto dalle quattordici personali interpretazioni, da un Drone Ambient ad un profondo beat diretto alla Dance interrotto da basi vocali a tratti un pò Boards Of Canada. Emblematici il brano d'apertura "I Am" con le sue sonorità glaciali; "Hollow Earth Theory" con la sua atmosfera bucolica dove il suono della natura trova ampio spazio d'espressione, "Young Light" con una melodia eterea avvolta in un canto sensuale e "Corpse Reviver No.2" all'ascolto di una nenia, quasi inquietante, che si fa strada arricchita da elementi elettronici.
Un grande lavoro d'equipe quello sperimentato da John DeRosa, il quale ha diretto con nobile maestria la produzione del progetto innalzando al meglio la sua multiforme intensità.
~ Alone Music

All'uscita di un album ci si può aspettare la pubblicazione di remix di varia estrazione, sia come sfogo dell'estro dell'artista sia come arricchimento delle canzoni con suoni nuovi.
In questa circostanza, non tanto tempo fa, uscì "In Sea" del collettivo musicale Aarktica, una graziosa composizione di toni tenui e melodici a cui, di logica, dovrebbero far seguito remix dai caratteri rivoluzionari. Ma non è così.
Sulla falsa riga del primo i toni si mantengono monotonamente uguali a parte qualche traccia più jazz o minimalmente più elettronica: insomma, si tratta del gemello eterozigote del primo album: a tratti distinguibili ma terribilmente simile.
~ Loud Vision