Friday, February 24, 2006

Steve Gilmore Reviews: Pagoda - Ripple Effect

Artist: Pagoda
Title: Ripple Effect

A million years ago on another site very far from here, I first came across Cape Town based Pagoda but lost contact with him when I moved over to Soundclick. On the internet, though, everything comes around again because lo and behold, he turned up a little while ago on MP3 Unsigned complete with new material. I have to say - in my own defense - that I am not a big fan of trance or techno (which is what Gert (aka Pagoda) specialises in ever since I've known him, but even so he has given me a couple of decent listens in the past so I'm always up for another.

Especially if there is a couple of years break in between ;)

I wish I could have welcomed Gert back with a nice review but, unfortunately, this is not to be the case. It isn't because all the bits that make up this track are not up to scratch, they are. It isn't that I have a well known antipathy to the genre, as I do but I have to put that predjudice aside when reviewing. Nope, where this track falls down to me is in that all-important flow.... Mind you, I also have a real problem with the bedrock of the track, a wooly, woefully inadequate kick drum that somehow just doesn't pump the beat anywhere near hard enough for the genre. Moreover, add the flow problem to this jumble and it just doesn't pull it off.

Only my opinion of course, but this is an opinion based on hearing several tracks of this type every month and KNOWING what the competition is up to. Firstly having a almost 2 minute intro into this track may work well - and probably does - on a dancefloor but the more sedentary (read lazy bastards) among us may not be too taken by it. Secondly, once the track starts (it's a sort of mix of electro-pop and Gorgio Moroder disco bass sequences) it's very disjointedness (too many breaks and electronic nooodlings) makes it - to my ears - a not solid enough dance beat. Surely that kinda defeats the whole object of the exercise? Hey don't take my word for it cos wtf would I know, but that's how this track sounds to me. At 6:28, this is no spring chicken either, it takes a lot of different things to fill up six and a bit minutes and this just doesn't try enough diversity - or rather what diversity it does employ is in the off-beat, slower sections. So, welcome back matey, and I wish I could have had better news but hey, you've got plenty more right??

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