Cool but danceable too - Tiga - DJ Kicks

2006-03-29 18:19
Make no mistake - this is a DJ set tailored towards the discerning, cultivated clubbing savant. A de-funked remix of Jolly Music's "Radio Jolly" sets the pace with unashamedly 80s staccato synth swathes segueing into the burbling instrumental sterilised fusion of Chromeo's brassy "You're so Gangsta". And when the seductive Euro-house breathy vocal disco diva strut of 2raumwohnung's "Ich and Elaine" eases into the mix you'd be forgiven for thinking you were swaying to the noir-disco of Grace Jones at New York's Club 54 back in the late 70s.

Although this is by no means chill out music, there is something curiously narcotic about the plethora of instantly familiar beat echoes coupled together with disco-naïve fe-he-and yes, even she-male vocal flourishes. It's a trip without being necessarily trippy. And a surprisingly refined one that melds an overarching pop sensibility infused with epic retro gestures (the Soft Cell tainted disco of Tiga's rendition of Felix da Housecat's "Madame Hollywood"), almost infectious mid-tempo dance grooves (Offpop's "Lowrider") and minimal contemporary techno moods (Antonelli Electric's "Dubby Disco").

So is this sexed up hermaphroditic machine music or merely a bit like wandering through an aquarium at night on your own? Who cares? Forget the retro-swagger of so-called electro-clash which invariably ends up neither rocking enough nor experimentally electronic at all. Tiga proves that such cultured, crowd-pleasing, dance floor friendly stuff can intrigue without ever pushing the envelope into edgy territory.

Unless you're an acolyte of the DJ Kicks' mix series you're guaranteed to be irritated by the endless beat mixed sequencing. Unlike many of his contemporaries Tiga mans the wheels of steel in search of a variety of styles. But then, he is Canadian.

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