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Saturday, January 9, 2010

Hercules & Love Affair - Hercules & Love Affair (USA 2008)

Whats Hot On The Roddus Stereo
Album Of The Week Part 3

I was introduced to this release by a good review it got in the UNCUT magazine a while back and I decided to check it out. This outfit comes via New York and what we have here is basically contemporary Disco/pop/electro/funk(to loosly quote the Tigerpics). I had had this for a while before I got round to putting it on the car stereo for a listen and afrer a couple of listens while driving to and throw on errands or whatever I started to get the impression that this is a really strong album, even though I hadn't really concentrated on the individual songs. It really seemed to groove, and I guess I actually felt, more than heard it. These guys really know their stuff and although they have taken pieces from across the history of dance music, they have merged it into their own thing. One of the highlights is the vocals on some of the tracks by Antony Hegarty(from Antony & The Johnsons) I think his unique voice works so wounderfully well with this music, better than with his own band, whom I am not too keen on. Another highlight is their use of brass and string samples to create somew very cool melodies on several tracks. This album also has plenty of soul.

  1. Time Will: Soulful electro ballad, Antony really lets loose in the later part of the song. exellent 4.5/5
  2. Hercules Theme: This is a great contemporary  disco/dance track  great string and brass melodies, best track on disc 4.5/5
  3. You Belong: Rn'B styled track, reminds me of Masters At Work, and I think they must have been listning to Aksak Maboul's 1977 Onze Danses Pour Combattre La Migrain album when they wrote this, sounds very similar to their Saure Gurke track. Another soulful vocal on this one and picks up on the second half. 4/5
  4. Athene: A cool Funky bass line with female vocals 3.5/5
  5. Blind: Great disco beat(reminds me of Born To Be Alive by Patrick Hernandez) Love the Brass peices, but song goes on too long and I started to loose intrest, also reminded me of early New Order, torwards the end.3.5/5
  6. Iris: This track is a slower number with a big beat and female vocals, more atmospheric 3/5
  7. Iris: Another slower track with interesting tempo, more experimental, dosn't flow as well not much melody, sort of tribal beat good vocals.3.5/5
  8. This is my love: Ok song but weakest on disc.3/5
  9. Raise Me Up: A more up tempo and cohesive song, disco again,  good brass 3.5/5
  10. True/False, Fake/Real: A good finish to the album, another uptempo house track disco/pop/electrofunk. 3.5/5
Overall I really enjoyed this album, some great shake your booty dance tracks, especially Hercules Theme  and some interesting electro/pop tracks. Some of it dosn't stand up so well under more focused and intense listning, but it's not really that sort of album, its great for driving to, working to or just having on in the background, and of course you can dance to some of it too as I said and finally, Antony really makes this album. Overall 4/5

Listen to this album Here

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