A new Dirtbombs record is always cause for celebration. Yesterday, I received word that the Motor City combo will be releasing Party Store, a Detroit techno collection, on 2/1/11.
Here's the first single, "Sharevari." I can't speak for the album
as a whole, but the song and video are great--as long as you don't
mind Mick Collins' fake German accent (I can dig it). And you got-
ta love his call and response with singer/guitarist Ko Melina.
Below: original version as featured on The Scene. Dig those moves!
Party Store is an assortment of live band interpretations of classic
Detroit techno music of the '80s and early '90s. These are songs Col-
lins digested when they were originally released--at a time where he
was already making waves with garage-punk legends the Gories.
Songs that run the gamut of subject matter from materialistic future-
disco braggadocio "Sharevari" (originally by A Number of Names) to
cold, post-industrial isolation of "Alleys of Your Mind" originally by
Cybotron) through the instrumental optimism of a worldwide house
classic, "Strings of Life" (originally by Derrick May)... All these themes
encapsulate the climate of Detroit both now and at the time of their
initial release. Let it be said clearly...this is a record that address-
es, at the same time, both the past and the future of Detroit.
With "Good Life"--originally by Kevin Saunderson via his Inner
City outfit, Collins re-contextualizes the upbeat modern dance é-
lan to echo with post-punk zeal as the zest of doubled harmonies
resonates throughout. "Bassbin" (originally by Carl Craig as Inner-
zone Orchestra) features modular synthesizer programming by Carl
Craig himself and is the album's pièce de résistance. Clocking in at o-
ver 21 minutes, the track's original light jazz underpinnings are dif-
fused into a martial, militaristic back beat coupled with fire-raining
feedback screes from Collins' trusty Kent guitar. It is arguably the
most intense recording the Dirtbombs have ever produced.
The end result is nothing short of impressive. The players' recreation
of the sequenced, digital rhythms and melodies stems from an Oblique
Strategies card pulled during the recordings ("Humanize something
that is without error") and they tend to do so with a crisp, Kraut-
rock-like precision. For originals that all contained drum ma-
chines, sequencers, and synthesizers the Dirtbombs tak-
es on these pieces all matter-of-factly and use said tools
only to accent what's laid down by the live unit.
***** ***** ***** ***** ***** ***** ***** ***** ***** *****
Click titles for my reviews of Dangerous Magical Noise, If You Don't Already Have a Look, and We Have You Surrounded.
Click here for the Pop Matters review.
Endnote: The band's "I Can't Stop Thinking About It," from
1998 debut Horndog Fest, appears in Blue Valentine (with Ry-
an Gosling and Michelle Williams). It opens at Seattle's Egyp-
tian Theater on 1/7/11. For more information about the Dirt-
bombs, please click here or here. Image from Force Field PR.