Dark Party Dark PartyLight Years
Crushing rhythms. Festive footsteps. Filters. Noises. Chemical din. Bang, bang, bang! The guys from Dark Party aren’t screwing around. They have no time to lose. They’re eating up the night. They’re swallowing it down without chewing. They digest it, let out the indigestion that smells like pills, and order a couple more mixed drinks without looking at the waiter. Why? Because they damn well feel like it. Eliot Lipp and Leo 123 met at the San Francisco Art Institute, where I suppose between one bout of drunkenness and another, they decided to forge an electronic alliance that has born juicy fruits. There is something in their music that evokes the black high spirits of the first maxis from Finger Lickin’ and the disco-house footsteps of Daft Punk, if Bootsy Collins were Thomas Bangalter and Prince, Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo. They have that lack of prejudice and that passion for get-outta-here 80s electro-funk-disco-house music that is so effective when you want to create hits for the dance floor. They know how to manage the beat box as if they were gods of digital percussion, and they’ve really got down that boom-plash, boom-plash that is so cool and so thoroughly funky. They know how to milk the basses until they get Clinton-like bass lines. They know how to find the groove as if they were German shepherds sniffing through suitcases coming from Medellin. And they do it all with a hedonistic attitude that is totally necessary in these times of long faces, as well as having a greater capacity to absorb styles than an old-fashioned terry cloth nappy.
The formula isn’t at all far away from what we have already heard, but it combines all of their influences very well. There is old-school electro, electronic soul, wonky, there are traces of Ed Banger, disco music, beach R&B—hey, there’s a little of everything. The secret is to make the brew into a danceable mass, but one with style. It’s highly festive, but never tacky: it’s electronic glam for the wicked. Daft Punk, Funkadelic, Kraftwerk, Digitalism, Kool & The Gang, Parliament, Sugarhill Gang and Michael Jackson float in an alcoholic bubble bath with momentary rounds of fireworks. It’s impossible not to have a good time with this.
“Easy” is pure 80s funk: the bass snaps directly at your perineum, the synthesisers are deliciously cheesy—it could make you dance even if you have a hernia. “Status”, by far the best cut on the album, is like putting the pre-pubescent Jackson 5, Grandmaster Flash, and Boys Noize in a Jacuzzi full of champagne. “Pilot” reminds one of the best moments of I-F and has a shower of retro synthesisers that would make Afrika Bambaataa scream with pleasure. “Tina” is a dance hit with heavy drums and Jake Slazenger (but high on coke) keyboards that should earn them a privileged place on the back cover of a Justice sleeve. “Patrol Patrol”, a mega-hit destined to turn the dance floor into a minefield, seems like homage to the disco-funk jabots of “Homework”. What can I say? They have stolen my heart. I like my dance music like this: as easy as a girl who’s drunk and on holiday, as black as the nape of Carl Cox’s neck, as funky as Pam Grier’s tits, and as kitsch as a denim matador’s jacket and Kirk Cameron’s hairdo. I fuckin’ love it!