Music Reviews

Star 69 Extended Mixes

Volume 1

Star 69

OK, these boys got drum machines! I first listened to this disc in my car, and after three cuts it seemed like all you got was a beat. I tossed it into the guilt pile and listened to it at work a week later, and discovered a bit more music in this collection of 1999-era trance. It’s a collection, and while I don’t think all the bands merit that much digital ink, there are a few noteworthy tracks. That Kid Chris build a nice solid driving beat upon some wooden-sounding drums, complete with some arbitrary stops that fly off into the swooshy spacey sound that always means Trance in my mind. There’s a ripped, distorted keyboard sound dominating Lula’s “Men = Drugs.” She puts up a clever one line lyric (“Men are drugs – I need more”), beats it to death and then it’s back to the heavy dance sound for a few more bars before taking off into the ozone.

On the thin side is Dan Q’s “Aura Tribe,” the opening cut that set me off on the wrong foot – think of a 10 minute drum solo, with the occasional police whistle or cheer, just to let you know it’s X and not LSD fueling the beat. Alma Matris’s “Musica Electica” is more of the same, a lonely sounding beat that might be more at home in an art installation than a dance record. Lastly, I’ll mention Airmales’ “Clear,” an ominous sounding tune with a distinctive male vocal asking the penetrating question “Are we clear? Crystal clear?”

This is a weak album for the genre, a problem magnified by leading with its weakest material and ending with its best. This is volume one of a series that may or may not get on volume two and beyond, all in a marketing attempt to fill the nation’s need for anonymous dance music in these troubled times.

Star 69 Records: http://www.star69records.com/


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