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  • Filed under: Review
  • 03/02/2011

Discodeine Discodeine

The Parisian duo of Pentile and edit maven Pilooski admirably pump fresh blood into mutant disco on their debut album as Discodeine. "We dance to organized noise," sings Pulp's Jarvis Cocker, keenly, on Discodeine's lead single, "Synchronize." Backing Cocker’s claim is a nimble, Moroder-disco melodrama of pulsating synth riffs and orchestral flourishes. This is ripe, modern disco that's commercial enough to lure suburbanites into Target and skeezy enough to entertain smack addicts (as seen in the tune's music video).

But oddly enough, "Synchronize" comes across as a coldly calculated attempt at pop fame on this album, as the duo mainly indulges in synth-disco experiments. Unfortunately, a few disposable misfires sap the album's momentum, such as the twee steel-drum jam "Falkenberg" and the twerpy, wonky synth workout "Relaps." Guest Matías Aguayo delivers a brief moment of welcomed sleeze on "Singular" by slithering his hissed vocals around an otherwise generic, robotic groove that plods along at a treadmill pace. What saves this album are Discodeine's departures into the ambient realm: An ethereal harp melody opens "Antiphonie" before it's broken up and looped into a mesmerizing machine groove; the 10-minute closer, "Figures in a Soundscape," beautifully places a sad guitar drone that hovers while a snake-charming synth riff emerges and melts away the minutes. Those two tracks possess an adventurous sensibility that's sorely needed in the DFA disco age, a time when ironic quotation marks are placed on too many grooves.

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