My Dear Disco
Electronica is admittedly not the easiest genre to get into. Chalk it down to the artificial, metallic voice of the artists, the trite lyrics, or the pretentiousness of artists who confuse what they are doing with art. Whatever the reason, it’s been out of the mainstream of rock culture for well over a decade. My Dear Disco’s latest LP Dancethink may well change that- if fans get over subjugation of guitars to the pulsating beats, that is.
Though the opening number “White Lies” sounds like something that would be apropos at a dance club. Over the course of the record, the three sextet slowly wins the listener over with a mix of Irish bagpipes and expert mixing- courtesy of engineer Mark Saunders, no stranger to producing slick albums. The real Easter egg is vocalist Michelle Chamuel, who sounds like a 21st century Gloria Estefan crossed with Gwen Stefani. The resembling to 80s acts of yesteryear is strengthened by the choppy guitars that bring to mind the best of U2, The Police and Duran Duran. Against such an eclectic back drop, it’s hard to think of it as simply a pure electronica or trance album. More like a trance album with a rock and roll spine.
The various musical instruments and styles lend the record a degree of diversity that keep it from becoming formulaic. From the reggae-influenced “For Your Love” to the R&B flavored “All I Do,” the album is a grab bag of influences that include everything from African instrumental to New Wave, with some jazz rock to spare. The presence of Whitney Houston, Eric Johnson, and the African instrumentalists of yore are keenly felt here. Hardly traditional trance faire.
The drawback of being an LP versus a full album is that there are hardly enough tracks get a true feel of the essence of the band. That might be a function of the economic factors going into the creation of the album, but at nine tracks the record is much better than nothing. The incompleteness of the album is perhaps a purely subjective opinion. But one certainly hopes that they follow Dancethink up with something more filling. A concept album, perhaps?
At $12.99, the album may not be for purists, but it certainly is worth downloading a track or two.