Accelerating snare rolls? Check. Synth presets? You know it. 140 BPM? Duh. And somehow this adds up to more than just another EDM record.
The modern American consumer is inundated with a superfluity of electronic artists to pick and choose from. Today, you can hardly wait in line for a sandwich or watch a simple commercial without hearing some trance stabs and an imitation-808 drumbeat.
France’s Matt Springfield attempts to stand out among the veritable ocean of his contemporaries by drawing influence from 80s New Wave and synthpop in the same way that popular acts like Cut Copy and Holy Ghost! do. Even without DFA’s inimitable throwback-chic production, he’s succeeded in making quite a name for himself on European charts and radio stations. Several prominent underground artists have stepped up as contributors to an album of remixed tracks off his latest release, Erase All Data.
This collection is a great anthology of popular dance music styles from the past 30 years. As Springfield’s endearingly mistranslated profile informs us, the album “mixes all of Matt [sic] musical influences, from the 80’s to nowadays.” Across the album’s 20 remixes, we hear bright, rudimentary synth-disco, acid house growls, and techno sheen intermingled with modern electronica in a way that expresses sincere inspiration, not shameless imitation. Even tracks that succumb to EDM hedonism, like Alvino-reworked “Poplife!”, seamlessly blend in heady production touches that are sure to refresh if you happen upon them during a night dominated by Avicii and Kaskade hits.
It would have been nice if more of the producers had drawn their ideas out over a couple more minutes, but every remixed song on this release does what it needs to within the space of a pop music attention span. A condensed, accessible history of dance music is just what America’s EDM scene needs considering most of its music has a genetic memory of about five years.
Favorite tracks: “The End of Life” (Decktronic’s Enjoy It While It Lasts Remix), “Things I’ve Said (Silver Disco Remix)”, “American Soldier (Disco Mike Remix)”