I can always count on Moby for one thing, and just one little thing. Play
is a famous album and it is full of great electronic tunes, it also has its fair share of snoozers. Itís obviously Mobyís most popular and critically acclaimed album. I mean the guy has been around since í91 and no one had even heard of him until Ď99, the year when Play
was released. I call myself a Moby fan but have never really enjoyed any of his albums except for, of course Play.
The one little thing that I can always count on Moby to do is persuade me to purchase his next album by releasing a few upbeat and poppy singles. Once I hear a few well composed singles I immediately rush out to the store to purchase the album without any further investigation. Moby, I hate you.
After listening to this album for the first time I instantly noticed the lack of energy and upbeat tracks featured on 18.
Donít get me wrong, Mobyís days of making bass heavy dance/techno tunes are over but none of these tracks are even compelling or even quick paced. Aside from the twinkle pop We are all Made of Stars
, the funky Jam for the Ladies
and the generic, electro-rock Rafters
no zestful tracks are presented on Ď18.í If this whole album consisted of upbeat dance influenced tunes then I would be very disappointed, but the problem with 18
is that it gets dull quickly and lacks a lot of energy even if I donít make any comparisons to any other Moby albums.
is an atmospheric and soothing electronica album. One thing that makes this album somewhat interesting is how Moby adds in vocal samples of soul and jazz singers. He will start a song off with a relaxing beat, add electronics in and then bring in some soul influenced vocal samples. The vocals are powerful and usually dominate most of the songs which can be either a good or bad thing. The problem with this is that the formula loses its touch and has already been used before. The music is nice to hear and is very relaxing but it gets old fast considering the same exact formula was used in Play
. Moby occasionally changes things up and adds in a brief instrumental, sometimes consisting of just a piano and pure electronic effects. I enjoy these tracks because they are simple and there is hardly anything to them. While Ď18' has plenty of simple, enjoyable tracks there are to many snoozers that hold the album back.
The real problem with 18
is that everything feels sort of out of place and half-assed. While Moby kept on putting in sampled vocals for each track everything has lost all of its emotion and certain songs feel very out of place. For example, [/i]Fireworks[/i] is a peaceful and warm instrumental consisting of various electronics and a soothing piano line. It really puts you into a trance and everything is simple and smooth. The problem is that right after this hypnotic track Moby shoves in Extreme Ways
a more joyful and upbeat tune. There isnít any rhythm featured on 18
it seems like Moby took eighteen tracks and randomly assigned them onto one album without splitting up the few upbeat tracks on the album and the more moody and depressing songs. In result you will be skipping around a ton to find the track that suits your mood because Moby is quite inconsistent.
No matter how many times you listen to this everything sounds like it has already been done before. In This World
sounds like another Soul/R&B song that belongs on an old b-side album. The whole song is made up of quick paced, shifting piano chords and a female vocalist wailing out different words. It has a nice feel and a relaxing beat, which is what Moby does best. The problem is that the following track, In My Heart
is made up of quick piano crescendos, and a female vocalist singing in the same exact tone. Another Women
is yet another song that uses more soul influenced female vocals. I must admit that it is much more downbeat then the other two songs, and is propelled by simple dynamics and some timpani work. While all of these tracks are quite soothing 18
is hard to listen to just because every song is so similar to one another that you canít really bare to listen to it that often.
That just about sums it up. Coming out three years after Mobyís classic album Play 18
is forgotten, and rarely mentioned. This is because there are no dominate tunes and no emotion is shown throughout the whole entire album. It seems like Moby pulled out a drum machine with some old vocal samples, brought out a few keyboards and said ďhey, letís make another Play." I hate to say it but this plan failed utterly. Everything off here feels lazy and Moby recycles beats like old pop cans (pardon the pun.) After a few listens the albums formula gets very old and you wonít be album to stomach any more soft beats, accompanied by jazzy vocal samples and dinky keyboards. While 18
makes nice background music it doesnít do much else. Unless you are a diehard electronica fan then there is no reason why you want to listen to this album.