Review Summary: Space jamz for the dance floor
DatA is awesome. No really, don’t question it. He. Is. Awesome. How do I know this? Because he told me. See for yourself: A looming visage of his namesake, lingering in the sky, a foretelling of the second coming over a city eagerly awaiting his brand of electronic revolution. And even if you tired to escape the-awesomeness-that-is
, you probably couldn’t – I mean think about it: riding on the second wave of French electro along with pioneers Justice, DatA brings his own blend of funk, house, disco and all out boogie to a scene that has been itching for The Skywriter
’s release ever since Trop Lazer
EP dropped in ’06, and reached fever pitch with his unstoppable remix of Tepr’s "Minuit Jacuzzi" in ’07 which dominated
dance floors around the world. With all this going for it, on the surface, The Skywriter
would seem to be a black hole of inescapable awesome/coolness. DatA is awesome. Right?
Well, to be honest, it’s mostly
true – The Skywriter
is undoubtedly the hippest electronic flavor on the market right now and there are plenty of reasons for it. Drawing from Justice’s pathbreaking Cross that introduced the universe to post-Daft Punk world of heavy electronic romps of dirty goodness, DatA have taken the template and smoothed it over with a heavy injection of disco-revival gloss, cutting the glitchy fat and focusing instead on creating space themed smooth groove and bedroom funk. From the dark, Dracula-film inspired organ synths of “Verdict” to the slow burning, hard hitting electro-fuzz of “Blood Theme”. The Skywriter
boasts a host of rollicking tracks that positively demand booty shaking with every punchy beat and warbling synth line. Towering over the length of the album and dripping in dancefloor energy lies the likes of “Nightmare” which lives up to its namesake by offering a jagged piece of body convulsing brutality that would satisfy the most hardened of dancefloor connoisseurs, while in the corner, it’s cousin track “Aerius Light” blazes its own trail of epic intensity.
Of course it’s not all about earth shattering movements, with tacks like “So Much Love” epitomizing the essence of French bassline driven groove, while “Electric Fever” and “Renaissance Theme” move at their own smoothly driven funk pace. Those feeling more inclined for vocal orientated dance will find comfort in Sébastien Grainger (of DFA1979 fame) who guest spots in both "One in a Million" and "Rapture". Yet amongst all this, one can’t help but feel that there’s a certain bit of emptiness that seems to be obscured by the glitz and gloss. Maybe because it’s all just too
smooth, with everything feeling just too
right. Don’t get me wrong – The Skywriter
is the perfect blend of all-that-is-hip-and-cool, but when ‘retro’ is the word of the day, ‘cutting-edge’ seems to be left in the dust. But who’s asking really? At the end
of the day, The Skywriter
is still an album that demands attention if only for its well deserved relevance and boogie-inducing dance floor grooves that’ll have you moving till the horizon’s light.