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2009 release, their long awaited second collaborative effort. The duo met in Grenoble during the early '90s at a rave. As for many people of their generation, Techno is a musical and cultural slap in the face. The two friends both bought decks and each became DJ's. As they started to work together on productions they dived into naive, free and easy Electro-Pop. Their arrangements are to-the-point, spontaneous, dynamic, and mainly generated on basic equipment. Their Techno has a song-like format - based on the verse-chorus pop schema, heavily influenced by the 80s. Back together again for Two on Kittin's own label, get ready for the return of the Electro Pop Gods.
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TWO is a darker, angrier, yet melancholy release that's solid from beginning to end and does not disappoint. Miss Kittin & the Hacker are right at home with this dancier, trancier take on their sound and it's really, really good. Miss Kittin doesn't sound as bored as usual but she still has that cold, deadpan delivery that works oh so well with the Hacker's cold, teutonic beats. The sound samples don't do the songs justice. Listen to the disc in its entirety. Oh yeah, they do a right proper cover of Elvis's "Suspicious Minds" that I'm sure will be slated for release as a single.
I'll write full on review later but for now I can't stop dancing.
Ok, so I've stopped dancing but there's a party in my head. Here's my blow by blow review of TWO:
THE WOMB opens with a minutes worth of bleeps and bloops that burble along harkening back to First Album but this is the only bit of that sound you'll get on TWO. Suddenly an industrial rhythm Front 242 or Nitzer Ebb would be proud of segues in as Miss Kittin croons her I-am-woman-hear-me-roar lyrics over it. But it's at the 2:15 second mark when this track hits the ground running as this wicked trance rhythm takes over elevating THE WOMB to a late nite dance groove.
1000 DREAMS. A sad, downtempo 80s inspired groove drifts along. Even the video reflects this sentiment. A chill yet dancey and oddly deja vu-ish track that will leave feeling like you've been here before.
PPPO. One of the strongest and tranciest tracks. A simple trance groove with Miss Kittin crooning, in increasingly angry and distorted vocals, People! Pleasure! Objects! Power! So why isn't it called PPOP? Think Nitzer Ebb's Join In The Chant only with Miss Kittin on vocals.
PARTY IN MY HEAD. Borrows the opening riff from Blondie's "Heart of Glass" but slams a 4/4 beat underneath as Miss Kittin croons, in a dead pan voice Debbie Harry would be proud of, about a party in her head on oxygen. This is the type of track I long, hope, and wish for Madonna to do. It would suit her well.
INDUGLENCE. A electro punk ditty, need I say more? I.N.D.U.L.G.E.N.C.E. Treat yourself! Love yourself! Caress yourself! Don't blame yourself! Initially, my least favorite track upon first listen but it's grown on me. The rhythm sucks you in. It's pretty awesome.
EMOTIONAL INTERLUDE. A fairly repetitious and forlorn melody loops itself as Miss Kittin admonishes her lover to be more delicate with her, to handle her more carefully which is later repeated as the chorus. Dreamy and sad.
SUSPICIOUS MINDS. A cheesy, fun, throw away gay house cover of Elvis's hit, but it's a good thing. Have you really ever heard a bad cover of this classic track?
ELECTRONIC CITY. This is the track that sold me on this new, modern sound of MK&TH when I stumbled across a free download on XLR8R. My first thought was "If this is the new direction in their sound then I'm on board for the journey." And what an awesome journey it has been. Robotic beats that segue into a downtempo groove with probably the most nonsensical lyrics if the entire disc.
INUTIL ETERNITE. A ghostly whistle, trance beat, and Miss Kittin crooning in French about "useless eternity". Another awesome late night dance track.
RAY BAN. A dark and moody close to the disc full of brooding paranoia. Behind my Ray Ban, the screen between the world and I.
1000 DREAMS(REPRISE) A three minute insturmental take on 1000 Dreams.
So that's it. That's my take on this awesome disc. It's definitely a notch above and miles beyond First Album so if you're expecting more of First Album, I guarantee you'll be disappointed.
Don't skip or scan through this album on first listen (as I did) because you initally won't like it (as I did). Put it on, sit down (or stand because you'll end up dancing), and LISTEN to it in its entirety from beginning to end. You'll love it if you're a fan of Miss Kittin or The Hacker. It doesn't disappoint.
"Two" shines when the songs break the typical verse chorus verse formula and jump the track. Tracks like "3 PPPO" and "Indulgence" are more rooted in the noise terrorist rhythms than pop music and offer a juxtaposition to what came before. The jokey and kitschy workout of Elvis' "Suspicious Minds" seems out of place on the album, but maybe that's the point. The album closes with the foreboding "Ray Ban" and a blissed out reprise of "1,000 Dreams." "Two" is an album unafraid of the future as it gleefully drags the ghosts of the pasts along with it.