Roger Sanchez

Roger Sanchez

First Contact

Sony

Apparently, Roger Sanchez and Francois K. first set fire to the dance floor by mixing flint with stick. That’s right. Sanchez has been around a long time, and it has taken him over a decade to actually produce his first album of original material. Professional artists simply shouldn’t wait that long. It can only lead to disappointment: either expectations are too high and are far from met, making us wonder why we wasted all that anticipation; or those high expectations are far exceeded, making people wonder how much genius the artist cheated us all out of. First Contact lies somewhere in between, making it a fairly good album. Of course, a lot of you know the hit, “Another Chance” (which I could do without). There are some other great tunes here, though. Sharleen Spiteri’s whispery seduction makes “Prove,” and “The Partee” is a Latin-flavored scorcher. However, a lot of the album seems to be working against itself. “I Never Knew” is quite typical, but Cooly’s Hot Box’s soulful vocals seem to rescue the cut. The smoldering bassline of “Contact” has you dancing until the ’80s arcade sound effects make you want to throw something at Sanchez’s head. And, what the hell was he thinking, drowning out N’Dea Davenport’s immaculate vocals with those whiny synths? (I’ll try to blame that one on Armand Van Helden, who also appears on the track.) With so much working despite itself, I’m not sure if it’s worth a decade of waiting to produce a good — but, by no means, momentous — album. It is up to Sanchez and the house-loving public to decide.

Sony Music Europe: http://www.sonymusiceurope.com • Roger Sanchez: http://www.rogersanchez.com

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