An odds ‘n’ sods vinyl/digital release, the Midnight Movies’ Nights EP is a souvenir only for the devoted. But as far as these things go, this is as good as it gets.
The haunting bookends of the EP’s “Nights in White Satin” covers (one in English, the other in French) run droned circles around the Moody Blues’ original, with the Movies’ layered, sandblasted psychedelia hewing closer to the vinyl nightscapes of Lee Hazlewood and replacing the original’s bluesy mood with dream-pop swoons and Gena Olivier’s deep, narcotic croon.
Between the covers, of course, there are the stopgap standards of leftovers and remixes; however, the Lion the Girl (2007) leftover “Should Have Known” is a wiry feedback crunch of psychocandy noise-pop and sensuous vocal melodies, and Yeah Yeah Yeahs guitarist Nick Zinner’s remix of “Souvenirs” pushes the track from the airy synth atmospherics of the original into an insistent, new-wave pummeling of pulsing electronica spiked with jagged guitar filaments more “Gold Lion” than Lion the Girl.
The Nights EP may be cliché in concept, but in execution, it kills.