Fabrice Lig My 4 Stars

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Belgium's Fabrice Lig is perhaps the most American of European technoists, a producer who well understands that machine music need not always sound machine made. The roots coursing underneath New York, Chicago and Detroit have rarely been so meticulously exposed as on My 4 Stars, Lig's best full-length to date. The title track is emblematic of the whole, propelled by a feathery kick, screwdriving analog synths and a classically uplifting diva turn. Elsewhere, "In My Arms" appears twice; first as a disco-tech midtempo number, then as a lachrymose cabaret piece minus the former's cowbells and propulsive kick. Best among the tunes here is "My Old Friend," a boompty ode to the Windy City marked by Nicolas LefÀvre's plaintive sax figures and Lig's intricately cross-hatched drum schematics. Striking in its compositional scope and sonic integrity, My 4 Stars eulogizes the last two decades of American dance music-a tribute that's equal parts irreverent, poignant and celebratory.