Friday, June 16, 2017

Calvin Harris-I Created Disco (2007)


ORIGINAL POSTING DATE: June 16, 2017

If it's true that this man 'created disco', then my ears and I will be staying connected to him for the foreseeable future! Calvin Harris is a name that I've positively come across on numerous occasions in my music-listening yesterdays (I seem to think he's tagged to a lot of trance remixes in the popular mainstream), though I had no memory of ever exploring any of his proper solo studio albums. Changed that today when I selected his debut to accompany me as I continue trekking through the realm of electronic music. Turns out this was a great idea as well, fresh on the heels of Daniel Wang's fabulous "Idealism" that I just listened to. "Merrymaking At My Place": the opening cut made me a merry man the instant the groovy bass line and his catchy, semi-rap style delivering the lyrics grabbed my attention, followed by the differing tonalities of the 'oh' and the way Calvin's voice drowns out at delivery of 'place' in the chorus and how he whimsically sings about everything going on inside his house. It reminded me of the tunes I heard from an old DAFT PUNK album I'd gotten addicted to a couple of years ago ("Homework", I believe it was), plus the fact that I'm a sucker for the quirky, the bizarre and unusual when it comes to music altogether. Had already declared it a favorite before I got to the rest of the tracks, which are all equally quirky and comical in some way, save for the few instrumental-only cuts and brief snippets ("Traffic Cops", "Certified" and "Love Souvenir"). One track that incites a bit of humor is "The Girls", where he freely talks about all of the different types of girls he likes (every color, hair style, size, and height is represented in the lyrics at some point). The best part is that all of it it put to a catchy dance beat that totally brings back fond memories of the 80's! Speaking of that beloved decade of mine, the follow up, "Acceptable In The 80's", also has that pop rhythm from thirty years ago going on with the music on here, with the humorous part coming with Calvin's senseless words of hot he's got the hots for any girls who were born during my elementary school years. "Colours" continues his colorful and comical words of expression ('make sure you got some colors in there,' he says, while being indifferent to everything else that the women dress themselves up with). I noticed something cool about the chords and arrangement: it sounds like one of the scores from the old Sega Genesis game, "Sonic The Hedgehog 2" (from the "Metropolis Zone" level, to be exact). Can't help but to notice these similarities to video games from my childhood with these electronic albums. Which brings me to "Neon Rocks" and the 8-bit video game-inspired sound effects that serve as the main electronic rhythm on that track. "Vegas" is another fun track where he shows off that quirky semi-rap style, bragging about his car and how he's got all the girls and boys riding along with him. It's especially funny whenever he says ' that's right ' and 'well alright' after backup vocals sing 'when I go to Vegas'. Techno and trance lovers will surely get a charge out of "This Is The Industry"; minimal vocals (only the robotic recitation of the title lyrics) and a very glitzy electronic arrangement are all you get here! Then closing out the disco party ends up being the most soothing listen on this album:"Electro Man". Not the 'electrifying' exposition you would expect here, given the shimmering production of the previous tracks; rather, it's a chilled, downtempo number where his voice becomes soft and mellow as his tender words give the music a romantic glow.

1. Merrymaking At My Place
2. Colours
3. This Is The Industry
4. The Girls
5. Acceptable In The 80's
6. Neon Rocks
7. Traffic Cops
8. Vegas
9. I Created Disco
10. Disco
11. Vault Character
12. Certified
13. Love Souvenir
14. Electro Man

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