Calvin Harris - I Created Disco
Although his claim of creating disco, an assertion which acts as this debut album's rather modest title, is a little far-fetched, Calvin Harris has been creating quite the storm in the teacup of the dance industry - and general music scene - over the last six months. The 23-year-old Scotsman announced he had love for those born in the '80s at the front end of this year, and since then he's been termed the new Mylo and handpicked by one Kylie Minogue to write tracks for her forthcoming album before his own effort has even hit the shelves! Well, the wait is finally over and Joe Public can finally judge whether it was worthy hype. My answer: pretty much.
Anyone who has heard Acceptable in the '80s or the more recent Girls, which is surely a contender for the most fun (but potentially annoying) song of the summer, will attest to the fact that Mr Harris can certainly conjure up some poptastic dancefloor beats to stir the masses. With that in mind, I must inform you now that there's not much in the way of deviation. The more snobbish of dance aficionados may turn their noses up at the bubblegum aspect that permeates this record, especially after such top-notch recent releases from the likes of the 'edgier' LCD Soundsystem and Digitalism, but everyone else will be having too much fun to remotely care. The opener Merrymaking at My Place, a cut that invites every listener, pills and all, around Harris's pad for the mother of all house parties, sets the scene for a record that will surely accompany many a get-together throughout summer 2007 and beyond.
First things first: the love 'em or hate 'em droll vocals that feature on the singles abound, as do the simplistic lyrics that could duly act as T-shirt slogans. Get past these gimmicky signifiers, and the occasional misfire (Vegas's overbearing similarity to ...'80s, Love Souvenir's attempt at slowed-down funk that Daft Punk did much better with Something About Us), and you have an immensely enjoyable listening experience laying in wait. The day-glo sensibility of Colours and Neon Rocks will unite pop fans, nu-ravers and club-goers alike. The title track, with its cheeky spoken word monologue set to a dancefloor-shredding backdrop, is reminiscent of James Murphy's Losing My Edge, while the child-of-the-'80s thread continues with Electro Man's blend of that decade's best pop with a New Romantic vocal. As if to utterly disprove the nay-sayers, despite the credible pop brilliance that the record has delivered up to this point, the cool-as-fuck Certified comes along and Harris has the sense to shut up and let his music do the talking; the fact that the track is equal to any of the instrumental tracks on Mylo's Destroy Rock & Roll proves that hype is sometimes spot-on. That album is still the benchmark for Harris's chart-denting one-man electro machine but, until his fellow Scotsman delivers album number two, your feet may very well be controlled in the interim by this very debut. As an aside, I Created Disco is probably the best advert for the capabilities of Amiga computers you're ever likely to hear. Yesiree.