No, no, we’re not going to go get a shack in the middle of the woods and try to secede – she’s switched her web page to Movable Type. She’s joined the blogisphere, or whatever the hell the journalists are calling it these days. I have to admit, after going through the installation and initial set up of MT, it’s pretty swanky. I was having one of those moments where I considered switching to it, but there’s absolutely no benefit in functionality. Still, I will recommend it to people who have shell space, can run perl scripts, and are interested in getting a blog going. Beats the pants off of LJ. As ridiculously stupid as this may seem, I’m adding her to my blogroll, since MT generates XML feeds. And as always, there’s a link at the top of every page in my drupal install.
To those who don’t know – EMI Toshiba in Japan likes to release dance compilations called Dancemania. These are notable because of an agreement with Konami, which makes these the licensed tracks that tend to appear on Bemani games. Dancemania Ex 2 is the 26th album in the “main” series, which tends to be fairly standard dance music. Other lines include Speed (which are all overly fast), Bass (now discontinued, almost all booty-bass songs), and a few other smaller lines. Today, I shall be reviewing Ex2.
Listening to each track, one at a time, rating on the standard 1-100 MP3 rating scale. For those who don’t know, I tend to average a rating of 40/100 across all my MP3s. Anything equal to or over 60/100 gets automatic inclusion on my usual playlist.
Captain Jack / Centerfold (130 BPM Move It Remix)
Oh lord, this is a bad start to the album. Isn’t this John Melloncamp? No, in fact, it’s the J. Geils Band. Talking about 80s trash – you want to know how ridiculous they looked?
Am I honestly listening to a CJ cover of a song I hated to begin with? I mean, some of the stupid CJ covers work – Iko Iko was okay – but this is just ridiculously bad. In fact, there’s absolutely nothing redeeming about this song. And that picture made it even worse. 1/100
Creamy / Never Ending Story (Manhattan Clique Extended Remix)
Creamy, of course, also did I Do I Do I Do which is currently being underplayed on Extreme. This isn’t any worse than the other Never Ending Story remix we’ve been subjected to, although it gets a little chipmunky before the refrain. While the last song was just stupid, this one at least doesn’t make me want to turn it off immediately. We’ll go with the pedestrian 40/100.
Atomic Kitten / The Tide Is High (Get the Feeling) (Lasgo Remix)
Oh my god, ANOTHER cover. If it wasn’t for the rest of the track list, I’d just call this Covers 3. Covering Blondie and/or Billie Piper depending on how you’re looking at it…this is very minimal for an Atomic Kitten song, I guess. Meh. 35/100.
Smile.dk / Domo Domo Domo
It’s like Nori Nori Nori crossed with Butterfly! I wish I was joking. Frankly, outside the refrain, this song is fine. But the refrain is SUCH a waste. I’ll be nice and give this 50/100.
Ladybird / Dangerous To Me
Okay, the bassline sounds like Can’t Get You Out Of My Head. The vocals sound a bit like Kylie. This is nothing spectacular, but it’s good – and given how it sucks far less than everything else I’ve been subjected to, let’s go 60/100.
Cream / I’m Back Now
Given that this has a little bit of a female vocal house feel, I’m guessing this isn’t the legendary band Cream. Makes a lot of sense to have a name very similar to another band on the album, too. Still, it’s decent vocal house, it’s not grating on my nerves too much…but it’s missing just a touch of something. 58/100
Funk Project / You Make Me Feel
I can’t get into this. Cheese + standard dance bass line + badly synthed horns + echoed female vocals with lots of “oooOOoOOO” lines = not my cup of tea. It’s not as bad as CJ, though. 37/100
X-Treme / Long Train Running
This will be interesting, since I love both X-treme, and the Bus Stop cover of Long Train Running. Okay, so the vocals sound like they’re done by some BeeGees knock-offs. And alternately, you get some weird “rapping” from the guy who does most of the X-Treme vocals. The reworking of the song itself sounds really good, but the vocals…wow, they really blew the potential on this one. Seven words I never hope to say again – I’ll stick with the Bus Stop version. 40/100
Bus Stop / Let The Music Play
Speak of the devils…WHAT THE HELL IS THIS EURO TRANCE COMING FROM MY SPEAKERS. Female vocals? Okay, odd. Where’s my lisping rapper? Oh, there he is, only it sounds like he’s being sampled – ironically, sort of like he did on Long Train Running. I can deal with this. Expect this to get massive shouts of “THIS SHOULD BE ON DEE DEE ARR” from the fanboys. 65/100
DJ Alligator Project feat. Dr. Alban / I Like To Move It
I have lived in fear of this track since the track list was announced. Dr. Alban appears to be the ones doing the vocals, and his accent (what is that, Indian?) is pretty thick. This seems to be a pretty standard trance cover…oh THERE’S DJ Alligator. Okay, this is really sad – before October, I hadn’t heard the original I Like To Move It in ages. However, thanks to the grand wisdom of Jason Enos, I’ve unfortunately been re-subjected to it and now know what it’s supposed to sound like. So while DJ Alligator does fine on his rap part, and the techno cover is passable, Dr. Alban is SERIOUSLY out of place here. Still, I’m willing to include this into the usual list. 60/100
DJ Rasputin / Katjusha
I Like To Move It gets mixed into this for far too long (50 seconds). And this is just hard trance with goofy sirens mixed in with what I’d imagine is a Russian melody of some sort. They should’ve just gone with the Tetris theme. Not doing anything either way for me. 50/100.
Kirsty Hawkshaw / Fine Day
Standard arena trance that I’ve heard before – surprisingly, this is the same vocalist who did the other trance version. What the difference is outside just the vocalist being credited, I’m not quite sure. Huh, just found out that the original of this was sampled into Halcyon + On + On. Interesting that this is on Dancemania now. Passable, if nothing else, but I’ve heard this a lot in the past. 60/100.
Lasgo / Alone
Triplet hoover trance with female vocals. And then some bassline I’ve heard before. Oh wait, this was remixed on FantasiA 3. No wonder it sounds familiar. So this must be the original? Not bad. Sadly, my willpower has been broken down so that the chorus is hooking me. Watch me rate this down in two weeks. 65/100
Milk Inc. / In My Eyes (DJ Philip Radio Edit)
Wow, another Female Vocal Trance track. This even has the stupid breakdown-snare fill comeback that I’ve heard in nearly every “trance” song since 1998. 30/100
Nouvelle Vague / Love and Pride
Wow, now it’s a trance track where the guy SOUNDS like a girl…and it’s just gone ultra-stupid. They sound a bit like wannabe Duran Duran. And the trance melody sounds like Fire from Beatmania 6th Mix. Better than the average we’ve been batting this album, but that’s not saying much. 52/100
Obsession / Your Song (Transensual Mix)
We seem to have dropped back to the lighter dance-trance. Oh good lord no. NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO. It’s an Elton John cover. A female vocal trance Elton John cover with snare fills and triplet melody and standard bassline. All I need is to put this on endless repeat, get Kyle Snyder freestyling in here, and I can have my own personal hell! 15/100, only because Kate’s going to want to hear it.
LMC feat. Karen West / Everything U Need
Just unremarkable on a whole. Relies more on rhythm and the voice of the female rather than most of the standard trance elements, so I guess that’s something. A pitiful 40/100.
E-Rotic / Fred Come To Bed 2003
And to close out the album, we get another remix of an E-rotic staple – and even though it’s got snare fills and the standard bass line I’ve been bitching about, at least E-rotic can make it INTERESTING. So help me god, I’m giving this a 60/100.
So half the songs are covers of songs I absolutely hate. The majority of the remainders are by the book female vocal trance. Some even hit both of those categories. There are 5 songs on here that I’d be willing to listen to again – and by “willing”, I mean that if they come on my playlist, I’m not going to flip the song immediately.
Skip this, unless you have a desire for pain or the ability to stomach all crappy trance and covers. I’m tired of the Speed series (Classical Speed was a waste), the main series, as Herbie said, has sucked since 21; I’d really, REALLY like to see another Scorccio mix. Or some more FantasiA. Please, anything except this shit they’ve been churning out.
No drinking game necessary for this one.
First off, I realized today (after being told by Rura that he had left a comment under my last entry) that I had a number of anonymous comments stuck in the queue, which is nice and hidden. So I just approved about 8 comments, and have disabled the moderation queue. Still, I’d like to see people actually register so I don’t just have a bunch of anonymous cowards.
Also, new additions to the blog roll include Dave Barry, the Twin B’s (Lil B and Orochi), and the loveable
Oh yeah – Alias apparently doubled its usual rating. Let’s hope it holds.
Oh yeah – did I mention I got a haircut on Saturday?
I still look like a tool in every picture. Sigh.
So I’m sitting here working; the weather page says that currently it’s 3 degrees, with the wind chill bringing it down to -13. This, sadly, is warmer than it felt earlier, even though the actual temp is down. I have to trek out in a bit to return our overdue movies and get some basic staples for the fridge. Hopefully I won’t get frostbitten.
Katie had to come home early from work today and take a sick day because she just felt nautious. She’s currently passed out in bed. Poor girl. :(
Last night was notable not for the huge blow out football game I didn’t watch, but because we had the essential “re-pilot” of Alias to digest. Network execs force production team to rekindle show with diminshing ratings by making extreme changes; entire storylines for past season and a half nuked/closed (depending on your view) in one tidy hour episode full of hokey dialogue and blatant exposition for new viewers. Oh, and of course, mandatory T&A to draw in the football crowd between the Bowl and the network version of The Man Show.
I can’t decide whether or not Alias has jumped the shark or not yet; a lot of things went on last night that would be considered shark-worthy, but I have too much faith in JJ and/or the evil powers of Arvin Sloane to keep the show interesting. But of course, only time will tell.
In the short term, I finally registered with ABC’s site so I could download Alias Underground, and it’s pretty nifty for a freeware game laden with sponsorship ploys (I nearly fell over when I saw an enemy document in the game that warned about the stealth capabilities of the Ford Focus). And it’s cross platform. So let’s go.
Install the engine first, then the mission packs. New missions every 5 weeks or so, 9 missions in all. Note that using these links doesn’t enter you in the contest, you’ll need to register like everyone else and download them from the official site.
Both very entertaining.
I had a fun run in at the mall today with the frat-boys-in-Abercrombie-who-laugh-at-dancing-games types. I realize I often look silly and/or ridiculous playing, but luckily, the kids who throw ice cubes on the stage while other people are playing always look worse.
“Webmaster” is a typo, according to Apple’s spell checker. Sugggested corrections: webmeister Web-master I’m almost tempted to change my resume to say “webmeister”. But maybe not.
Oh yeah – Freeverse shipped Xpression! today. If you have OS X, give it a whirl, it’s pretty nifty. And make some themes!
Thanks to the bald capitalist for this link. WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Saying they feared government snooping against ordinary Americans, U.S. senators voted on Thursday to block funding for a Pentagon computer project that would scour databases for terrorist threats. By a voice vote, the Senate voted to ban funding for the Total Information Awareness program, under former national security adviser John Poindexter, until the Pentagon explains the program and assesses its impact on civil liberties.
I essentially AAA’d Worst Mistake on Expert while playing Freq on my first try.