I originally bought OK Cowboy on a whim while in a music store, it was a good whim and so I'm back for more. So is Vitalic and this album delivers on his earlier promise. He shamelessly goes for massive catchy hooks and slamming bass-lines without apology or hesitation - and then just blames it all on the 70's... There's a real 70's vibe running throughout and maybe the only thing missing from this album is his cover of Hot Butter's Popcorn or even better, the original Grange Hill theme tune!
It's all a lot of fun - even if that's a really un-cool word to use about dance music.
PS: Sorry for using the phrase 'slamming bass-lines', I tried hard not to, but in the end it became unavoidable. Get the album and you'll understand.
I absolutely loved Vitalics last album OK Cowboy and was heartily looking forward to more of the same from Flashmob which is just as well because it is more of the same, well some of the time, while being angled subtlety away at others. It is sometimes a ruddy great stomping behemoth of a dance album that will rattle the roof off many a club but is also more diverse but is always tremendous fun to listen to at home which is in all honesty where I am most likely to listen to it. It is also a bit more outward looking as well as if Vitalic can see through the roof of the clubs into the night sky beyond. Pascal Arbex-Nicolas, better known as Vitalic , has arguably not taken the music a hugely tangible step forward as befits an artist who is progressing massively but there is enough on Flashmob to emphatically suggest that neither is he an artist who is treading water or stagnating prematurely either. A track like "Still" with it's jerky rhythms , dispassionate female vocals interspersed with wide screen synths suggests early in his eye is not necessarily fixated on just the dance floor. "Second Lives " is a high energy glory of pulsing bass and whirring electric pulses that advocates texture is as important as beats. "Alan Dellon " ( presumably meant to be French actor Alain Delon )has a curious skittering metallic cadence over glowing sound track keyboards while "See The Sea (Blue) " even invokes some of the allure of 1960,s female chanteuse pop over chubby keyboard notes and phased vocoded vocals. I would challenge anyone to dance to "Chicken Lady" and not look like they are having a live hip replacement while being devoured by fire ants. In fact I would probably pay to watch that. So maybe for those who want only thumping hedonistic floor fillers this album will disappoint to some degree .Certainly I would not advocate Flashmob is as good as OK Cowboy which makes me a bit of a hypocrite as I normally insist one album differing from the next but on the plus side there are still enough pounding pulses , throbbing bass lines and gyrating rhythms to keep the more dance focussed punters happy. Those who want more than hands in the air exhilaration should find plenty in Flashmob to keep them happy too. In fact with this album Vitalic has pretty much got all the bases covered. Clever lad.
This album is very, very French and its creator Vitalic (aka Pascal Arbez) certainly knows his onions.
'Flashmob' goes about its duty spreading melodic mayhem like there's no tomorrow. A little dated in the nicest possible way but it is virtually impossible not to be swept along by the enthusiasm and rich ideas generated by its maker's fine musical imagination.
The apocalyptic big bass synth intrusions in opening track 'SEE THE SEA (RED)' are the stuff of wild nights and big, bad, bouncy disco dreams.
The bubbling post-Moroder obligato of 'Poison Lips', together with its deconstructed, disembodied voice would be almost impossible not to dance to on a good night out. Had Phillip Oakey been available to contribute a lead vocal the 80's retro-dream would be totally complete !
Title track 'Flashmob' is a dissonant rhythmic masterpiece. A guaranteed rock-solid club anthem to be - if it isn't already.
There are very few weak moments in this stunning 13 track collection.
'Still' is a particular favorite. A fragile, fractured, almost oriental melody is played out over a shifting, tonally complex, arrangement of string-synth washes and skittering beats.
'Second Lives' is about as uplifting as uplifting gets.
The spirit of epic French electro is very much alive in this music. Jeanne Michel Jarre might well have been there be smiling in the wings. The pulsing cadences of 'STATION MIR 2009' and 'See The Sea (Blue)' bring the genre bang up to date with skillful and knowing aplomb.
Noisy, bold as brass, single-minded and classy to the core.
With the second track featuring in the Dredd movie, and sounding like a lot like Donna Summers I Feel Love, Flashmob a dramatic shift in style from Ok Cowboy. Very electro asn Goldfrapp-esque Flashmob grew on me like a rash, having to force myself to remove it from the car stereo for fear of listening to it too much.
Still it is a Vitalic gem and highly reccommended.
It's uniqueness is hampered by his third album Rage Age whic does feel slightly like it'c comprised from the songs that Flashmob left out.