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4.4 out of 5 stars 111 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 24 1998)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Universal Music Canada
  • ASIN: B000006BZ5
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 111 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #18,484 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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1. Take California
2. Velvet Pants
3. Better?
4. 360 Degrees (Oh Yeah?)
5. History Repeating
6. Winning Style
7. Bang On!
8. A Number Of Microphones
9. On Her Majesty's Secret Service
10. Bigger?
11. Cominagetcha
12. Spybreak!
13. You Want It Back

Product Description


Since the Chemical Brothers explosion, new big-beat acts from the U.K. are greeted with skepticism, but Propellerheads are no copycats. Alex Gifford and Will White did the usual groundwork by releasing singles and EPs before giving up a full album. The groovy single "History Repeating," featuring '60s cabaret vocalist Shirley Bassey, plays slightly into the lounge revival of the late '90s but with a James Bond-esque style that grabs attention similar to Portishead's "Sour Times." The recurring spy film theme makes this a perfect soundtrack for Austin Powers's first rave--"On Her Majesty's Secret Service" is actually a Bond remake. Propellerheads also slip in full-on "rock" jams ("Bang On!") and slick urban cut-ups reminiscent of De La Soul, who appear on "360° (Oh Yeah?)." Shifting tempos from laidback to lightning-fast with exceptional ease, Decksandrumsandrockandroll is a solid collection of funky, jazzy, hip-hop-influenced dance music that has earned its mainstream acceptance by delivering the goods. --Liisa Ladouceur

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By EA Solinas HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on April 29 2005
Format: Audio CD
Big beats. Hip-hop. James Bond. That's the description of the Propellerheads' "Decksanddrumsandrockandroll," a wildly enticing album that mixes dance music with a James Bondian atmosphere. Its crossover appeal and originality are very good, but the raw energy is the icing on the cake.

A cheerful, sputtering radio sample opens the album, before leading into a gritty maze of electrobeats and percussion, interspersed with samples. It's heavy stuff, but still fun. Things reach their heaviest point near the end when jazz rhythms are mingled with deep vocal samples and some blisteringly raw electronic buzzes.

It gets more fun in the second song, "Velvet Pants," a vaguely jazzy song with the constant repetition, "He's got a nice body, he's wearing velvet pants... Send the first kid down, send the first kid down, and they played records."A more openly hip-hoppy sound enters with the pleasantly slackerish "360° (Oh Yeah?)", while "Winning Style" has a glitzier, faster tone.

The best songs of all are the ones with a distinctly James Bondian flair: "History Repeating" is a wonderfully overwrought lounge-dance song, with Shirley Bassey roaring that, "And I've seen it before/and I'll see it again/just little bits of history repeating!" Same with spy dance-track "Spybreak." But things reach their peak with "In Her Majesty's Secret Service," a ten minute opus that mingles majestic retro with big beat fun, complete with an orchestral brass climax.

If it sounds fun, that's because it is.

Kitschy electronica is one of the easiest kinds of music to mess up, especially if there's sampling going on. Give it a theme, and it's even harder.
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Format: Audio CD
After seeing Propellerheads on my recommended list several times, I finally gave in and bought the Decksandrumsandrockandroll CD. Terrific choice! I loved the album from the opening song. Propellerheads are amazingly versatile and the range of styles and moods exhibited on this disc are astounding. The covers "History Repeating" (Featuring Shirley Bassey) and "On Her Magesty's Secret Service" are absolutely first rate. Other wonderful tracks include "Take California," "Velvet Pants," "Bigger ?," "Cominagetcha" and "You Want It Back" (Featuring Jungle Brothers). Lesser tracks, but still quite good, include "360 / Oh Yeah" (Featuring De La Soul), "Winning Style," "Bang On!," "Better ?" and "Spy Break." I find no merit in "A Number of Microphones" and I wish I could get it off the CD.
I've now listened to this CD about 20 times and I thoroughly enjoy it. Some of the songs provide excellent dance music. However, the humorous banter and the aforementioned "Microphones" track don't stand up to repeated listenings and I'm left with the urge to edit the disc. Alas, this is a minor complaint and some listeners may actually enjoy this stuff. All in all, this is an outstanding disc and I'll be looking forward to their next offering.
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Format: Audio CD
I have been delving into my cd collection lately. One of those cds I re-discovered was Propellerheads' debut album "Decksanddrumsandrockandroll". My first exposure to them was the video for the song "History Repeating" which features legendary singer Shirley Bassey (which by the way was my first exposure to Shirley Bassey herself). I just love the retro-ish sound of the song. It has a very '60s feel. "History Repeating" is one of those songs that sounds like it would be perfect for an Austin Powers movie. This song would have been even bigger had it been around for the brief swing movement. The rest of the cd is fairly good. It isn't something I can listen to day in and day out. I'm not a big fan of break beat music but unlike a lot of break beat acts that were coming out around the time "Decksanddrumsandrockandroll" came out, the Propellerheads managed to maintain a separate identity from all the Fatboy Slims, The Crystal Methods, and The Chemical Brothers at the time. The Propellerheads incorporate various sounds from '60s retro pop ("History Repeating" and "On Her Majesty's Secret Service") and hip hop which I can't say the same about Fatboy Slim or The Prodigy whose music never attempted to go beyonds the realm of dance music. Overall "Decksandrumsandrockandroll" is a rollicking good time.
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Format: Audio CD
I'm not the kind of person to write rave reviews about many music albums, but this album is utterly ridiculous. Every track offers something unique to the sound, but the album as a whole is very cohesive, sticking to the spy-sound guns that make this duo so talented. Contrary to the person who said this album isn't great to dance to, I disagree...the big thing, though, is that this isn't club music. This isn't your regular 4-on-the-floor sound, though most of the songs are in standard 4x4 rhythm. Incorporating a variety of really unique samples (mostly UK/British stuff), the Propellerheads have created an album that never stops getting funky. I can't pinpoint a lot of what makes this album, 'cause each song is unlike anything you've probably heard before. There's a stupendous hip-hop track (360 degrees) that contrasts really well with mainstream hip-hop and shows those guys how to do it right. There's a beautiful reworking of a lounge-style song (History Repeating). There's some downright slamming, angry, noisy music (Bang On!). Then there's the "Correct Microphone Placement" song that is a perfect little beatbox number. Obviously "On Her Majesty's..." is a killer track, and it bridges classically-styled music with some hard-hitting beats very well. I cannot recommend this album enough, to any music fan in general. The people who doubt what techno can be haven't heard enough music like this. I often wonder what the point in creating house music was after the mid-late 90s, since all the good stuff seems to come out of the earliest works, like this disc.
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