Batavia: Batavia and Their Friends

Jacksonville, Florida-based darkwave band, Batavia, follow the abundance of their 2020 releases with an album composed of remixes and reinterpretations of those tracks. Batavia and Their Friends finds Terri and Ed Cripps' work redefined in the capable hands of acts like Grendel, Spankthenun, Insatiable Void and many more, and it ultimately presents Batavia's dark industrial approach through various different lenses.

Opening track, The Absinthian - originally on Quite Mean Spirited, is reworked by electro-industrial veterans, Grendel, who came up with an approachable version of the song, atypical of their usual anthemic forms, and closer to a post punk direction, close to to New Order and OMD. 

Another release highlight comes through the notable eeriness of Step 13 by Texas industrial/EBM artist, Spankthenun, who accentuated the track's dark character in a witch house manner.

Elsewhere, the Batavia remixes take an absenter, synth-heavy direction though remixes by Insatiable Void and the band's own rework of Fields of Gray, while their cover of the underrated Duran Duran classic, All She Wants Is, becomes even more sensuous and grittier through an overfull and vibrant version by Syrinx.

Batavia have also revamped their own tracks The Absinthian, Step 13 and Scab Mask, on all of which they came up with heavier, more intensely pulsating and more grandiose versions of EBM electronica, and showed their extent, and their increased levels of musical innovation.

Pushing on, Beta Virus bring The Absinthian to a totally danceable, goth club-ready standing, while Mach Fox and Microwaved take a more shielded industrial direction. For the remaining guest remixes, it's Psyence Fiction and Ghstprxy the ones who tend to experiment more, and drive Batavia's darkness through moodier paths. 

Without repeating itself, Batavia and Their Friends and its plentiful 14-track entirety both delights and stirs, bringing forth a wide variety of sounds and art forms, while preserving a logical level of cohesion. 

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