Rating: 3
   I still don’t understand how the drum machine came to dominate dance music. Sure, drum machines never waver the tempo, which is great for galley slaves or robots. But dancers are human – human drummers make dancing more fun!
   Admit it: whenever you’re grooving to “Respect” and Roger Hawkins slips in that little flam just before the verse, doesn’t your hip shift a little and make you smile? People get more excited when the chorus of a song comes in, and the drummer kicks up the tempo: that’s what makes dancing to a band such a delight. (It’s no surprise that one of the only half-decent songs on Sexplosion!, “Sex on Wheelz”, has a real drummer.) Drum machines seem to have sucked that element of interaction out of the scene – no wonder people need to take Ecstasy to enjoy dance music.
   But even if, for some reason, you want mechanized drum music from the early ‘90’s, there’s got to be something better than these stale Casio beats and obvious keyboard riffs. Unless you’re particularly stimulated by lame samples of televangelists over prefab horn tracks, skip this one.


  • From Chris Willie Williams: That was an interesting point about dance music, too, in your My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult review. I'd never considered the advantages of an imprecise human drummer in regards to dance music, but you're probably right about it being more exciting that way! However, as someone who listens to a lot of dance music but actually, physically dances only at gunpoint, I have to say that the dehumanized, robotic element of most dance music- or otherwise electronic bands, like Kraftwerk- is one of the main attractions for me. It's easy to imagine that the machines themselves are just having fun making music, and good dance music takes me out of reality as a result. I once read a review that described dance music as "harsh sounds for gentle souls," and although I can't articulate exactly why, I think that puts a finger on it. Something about the electronics just makes everything go down easier, in a backwards kind of way...
    I'm not explaining this well at all. *sigh* Lousy NyQuil...

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