The Williams Fairey Brass Band
There’s a small intersection between the set of people who like orchestral music, and the set of people into dance music, who will appreciate this as more than a novelty. Full-on, symphonic brass band interpretations of classic club tracks will bring a nervous smile to the faces of those in one group and not the other will quickly find the joke wearing thin.
Of course, there’s a third group of people, into neither, who can actually hear this as an interesting experiment in music. I recognize a few tracks here — the KLF’s “What Time Is Love?” and 808 State’s “Cübik” among them — but some of the ones I haven’t heard, like A Guy Called Gerald’s “Voodoo Ray,” that really intrigue me. Still, a handful of arrangements only serve to dredge up the repetitive simplicity behind a lot of these compositions — that thudding bass line you heard the other night isn’t quite as exciting when it’s coming from a phalanx of tubas.
Overall, the winners more than compensate for the losers, so if you happen to think that dance and brass is actually an interesting idea, this is recommended. And, no, this is no April Fool’s joke. Mute Records, 140 W. 22nd Street, Ste. 10A, New York, NY 10011