Pixeltan - Get Up / Say What 12"
DFA2139 / 2004
A. Get Up / Say What (DFA Remix)
B1. Get Up
B2. That's The Way I Like It
Pixeltan's latest effort – their first release in five years, and long overdue – is a 4 song EP that solidifies a sound that has been slowly (very slowly) been developing over the course of almost a decade now, and also manages to completely redefine what these 3 are capable of. The new tracks are both referential and reverential, while still being wholly of this time, modern, fun and very funky indeed.
On their new four-song EP, the band takes inspiration from a number of sources. On "Yamerarena-I," Pixeltan builds atop Afro percussion with steady bass and guitar lines, and Yoneta's matter-of-fact vocals, which veer from Japanese to English (Yamerarena means "can't stop" in Japanese). "Scatter" and "No More Delay" take a page – or at least a few notes – from Larry Levan's Paradise Garage disco songbook, while "I Told You So" shows an appreciation for ESG, but adds layers of dynamic percussive elements and showcases Yoneta's vocal ability to go from sweetly menacing to raw-throated screams within the song's mere four minutes. ("I told you so," she spits, before adding, as if to ward off any remaining doubts, "I told you so...bitch.")
The eclecticism of Pixeltan’s sounds is a natural byproduct of the musical experience each member brings to the trio: drummer Hisham Bharoocha formerly played with both Black Dice and Lightning Bolt; bass player Devin Flynn and singer Mika Yoneta are ex-members of Plate Tectonics. The Brooklyn-based threesome originally formed in 1998, and released their self-titled EP in 2001. The same year, they collaborated with DFA on a remix of their song "Get Up/Say What," which the public didn't hear until 2004. The resulting track – a throbbing mix of jittery bass, dancefloor beckoning handclaps, and Yoneta's alternately seductive and screeching banshee vocals – invoked an immediacy that resonated instantly with listeners.
- Kali Holloway