Central Reservation

I can’t really explain why I’m so captivated by Beth Orton’s “Central Reservation.” I don’t understand the lyrics, and one of the many remixes I thoroughly enjoy is a style of music I normally don’t even listen to.

As the title track to her latest album, it was originally recorded as a slow, almost sleepy ballad. The first version I heard was remixed by Ben Watt of “Everything But The Girl” and has quite a bit more bounce and beat. Hearing the original after that took the right mood, but each, in its own place, is perfect.

The one I just don’t understand liking is the “Spiritual Life Ibadan Mix” which starts with a single pounding drum which doesn’t let up for eight minutes. After the rest of the instruments jump in, what sounds like the ‘Ben Watt’ mix vocals join in the fray. In the middle of this hammering dance tune we’re treated to a blistering acoustic guitar solo which is starting to sound natural to me. Also available on the same import CD are the “Then Again” version and the “William Orbit” remix. If you’ve heard either one and can offer insight, let us know.