Review of Mr Oizo's album 'Lambs Anger'.
It seems like an age ago since the infectious bass-hook of 'Flat Beat' grasped me from beyond the Levi's marketing strategy of the late 90's, just over a decade I believe. 'Lambs Anger' sees the return of French electro-nut-job Mr Oizo, his third outing, and certainly to my mind his most eagerly anticipated since the ed banger bug got hold of the scene a few years ago. Now for me, that sound has been wearing a bit thin of late. Regurgitating the same formulas to guarantee dancefloor acclaim, and a series of collaborations in an effort to cast their twisted web as far as they can. Having said that Oizo has always been a favourite of mine. Never one to rest on his laurels lets see what he's brought for us to feast on this time.
The album opens with 'Hun', something of an album intro come disclaimer advising the listener 'you're about to hear a collection of recorded stuff.some are good some are bad, some are just okay.'. Okay, not a good start. I mean if you're lucky enough to have a record deal why squander it releasing anything but the music you yourself feel is worth it? Anyway, the first few tracks don't cover any new ground really. The same breaksy mash up you'd expect from Oizo, that, with the use of some interesting sound choices manages to prevent this from being entirely stale. His AD-HD approach to the dancefloor is echoed throughout this LP. Dipping into as many sound banks as he can during one track. For me this is what used to hold Oizo above the malaise of dark disco but he's been doing this for so long that it's just starting to seem, I don't know, a bit lazy. On top of this as a result of the chopping and changing style of Oizo's output, none of the tracks ever seem to really get off the ground. There are a few exceptions 'Erreur Jean' being one of them, 'Gay Denstists another; with a brilliant pastiche of dark techno and cut and paste disco cuts. However for the most part 'Lambs Anger' sounds like a really long build up with little or no pay off. First single 'Positiv' kinda proves my point. This is the most upbeat of the offerings on 'Lambs Anger' and still it is just 8 bar after 8 bar of build up, and before you know it it's the next track. I can see why Oizo himself disliked the track, saved by the nagging of his girlfriend. Now don't get me wrong, every now and again there are some great chopped vocals, and rich deep synth work, but it is far too hit and miss for my liking. True, it is the most 'together' of Oizo's releases, but this is at the cost of the brilliance that ensued on his previous albums, which both had glimmers of sheer genius. Sadly this, it seems, is where the mediocrity has set in for Mr. Oizo.
I should explain that in the time that tweeked-out French electro house has been ruling the roost in European dance music, there has been some interesting contributions. Jackson and his Computer Band took the sound as far avant guarde as possible, where as sebastIAN has been working taking his productions into the field of metal, without ever actually picking up a guitar. It is because of this that the artists known in the field really need to up the stakes to keep the scene from burning out.
Unfortunately Oizo has just missed the mark on this one. With the obligatory Uffie guest spot, the recycling of dance relics and more than the occasional disco funk breakdown 'Lambs Anger' is by no means a bad ed banger album, it simply fails to deliver the breath of fresh air that fans of that scene deserve. Fans will encounter much of the same ingredients on this French delicacy.just a shame that it hasn't developed at the same rate as my pallete..