Various Artists - Now Dance Anthems
It's hard to argue with the currency of the first disc in the latest Now volume, a veritable who's-who of chart-bothering wunderkids, inspiring even the most leaden-footed among us to indulge in the occasional round of The Mashed Potato come the midnight hour. From the first beats of Dizzee Rascal's 'Holiday' via deadmau5 and Chicane it's a fairly comprehensive round-up of populist dance, exemplified by the Wideboys edit of Little Boots' 'Remedy' ("Dance is my remedy" indeed Miss Heskith). A few tracks also typify where the genre can go wrong (Bob Sinclar and Cutee B featuring Dollarman, Big Ali and Mekedah perhaps being the longest example), but something like the Sophie Ellis-Bextor-featuring 'Heartbreak (Make Me A Dancer)' from Freemasons is smart and classy enough to mark it out as being a surefire hit no matter what decade it was from.
The other two discs are vaguely reverse-chronological, so on disc two we get 'Call On Me', 'Groovejet' and Kylie teamed up with The Chemical Brothers, 'Right Here, Right Now' and LMC vs U2. Disc three goes even further back to prove an element of cheese has always been present - especially when it comes to European material - whether it be in the form of Black Box or Rozalla, although the inclusion of MC Hammer seems particularly unnecessary.
This set is obviously not aimed at the genre afficianado and it barely scratches the surface of the multiplicity of guises the dance format has assumed over the years, but as a cheeky reminder of beered-up nights down the local meat market over the past 20 years or so, it does the job reasonably well.