Mr. Lava's Trash Music Compendium

Another round-up of the best, the worst, and the most intriguing trash of the past and present.

(August 2003)

Crazy Leo - More Than I Can Say
Happy hardcore pioneer Crazy Leo came and evidently went in 1995. If you need a headache, any of the five mixes of his cover of Bobby Vee's classic "More Than I Can Say" will give you one.

Danijay feat. Hellen - Il Gioco dell'Amore
One of the most spectacular boom-boom Italo songs of the year is Danijay's "Il Gioco dell'Amore." Backwards vocals, cries of "Amore!"—PASSION, PEOPLE, PASSION!

Master Blaster - Get Closer
Master Blaster have revamped an album's worth of Italo disco classics. Their cover of Valerie Dore's "Get Closer" doesn't do justice to the lush original, but for today's hyper-caffienated generation it rocks.

Darude - Feel the Beat
Darude's "Feel the Beat" is sort of a lesser version of the dude's famous "Sandstorm," but it does contain a chick's vocal, and there's a cool half tempo bit, so what the hell, give it a whirl.

Hampenberg - Grab That Thing
I love any dance group with an affinity for cartoon sound effects, so Hampenberg rank high on my list. "Grab That Thing," which predates their legendary "Duck Toy," is a catchy tune replete with sensible carpe diem dating advice!

Richard X feat. Kelis - Finest Dreams
Enjoying great chart success in Great Britain, and probably destined to do the same in the United States, music mishmasher extraordinaire Richard X's "Finest Dreams" contains funky electro beats married to sassy Kelis's vocals. One for slinking to.

Las Ketchup - Kusha las Playas
Smart money says Las Ketchup are doomed to be one hit wonders with their "Asereje (The Ketchup Dance)." But in truth they have turned in an additional gem. "Kusha las Payas," their second single, is really quite excellent—and the ending is downright startling. It's our little secret, OK?

Paola & Chiara - Vamos a Bailar (Esta Vida Nueva) (Pool K remix)
Paola & Chiara are a couple of hot Italian chicks (one blonde and one brunette, of course) who did a number of albums together. Amazingly, they can actually sing (check out their "Amici come prima" for a particularly heart-wrenching vocal performance). "Vamos a Bailar (Pool K remix)" is a thumpy, Latin-esque number, as smooth and sexy as Paola's and Chiara's long, long legs.

Foggy - Come...(Into My Dream)
Foggy delivers a pretty typical piece of catchy Eurodance with "Come . . . (Into My Dream)." It works.

Laura Turner - Soul Deep (Signum Mix)
America's Curb records signed Kaci, an American who enjoyed more success in Europe than she did here. Now Curb has signed Laura Turner, whose "Soul Deep" (which sounds like Charlotte Church meets—well, not quite Massive Attack, so we'll go with William Orbit) has gotten the trance remix treatment overseas. Check out the Signum Mix for a solid slab of boom-boom trance, though I could have done without the silly key change (oooohhh, how dramatic, Signum). The original is goosebump lovely too, suitable for a Polish cellar pub.

DJ Ross - Smile (Luna Radio Edit)
DJ Ross's perky "Smile (Luna Radio Edit)" sounds like Eurodance had it been created by 1970s AM popstart Gilbert O'Sullivan. Melody curiously resembles that of the Cure's "Boys Don't Cry."

Boney M - Sunny
Boney M's 1970's Eurodisco hit "Sunny" makes my German friend Petra happy, so it makes me happy too. Sounds like it could have been recorded in the United States, but it was made in Germany! Shock: the iTunes Boney M album is, in fact, a Boney M cover group (as of 30 July 2006). Pretty unforgiveable.

Milky - Non so Perché (Be My World)
A strong follow-up to the more successful "Just the Way You Are" that has many of the same sunny qualities as that original single. But that same lack of distinction may be why it ultimately suffered the Eurotrash follow-up curse. Singing in Italian probably didn't broaden its appeal, either, though I happen to be fond of that language.

KCPK (aka "Various Artists") - We Will Rock You
KCPK's "We Will Rock You," which features the dubious vocal talents of a handful of 8 to 12 year old kids, is probably the best novelty cover of the year. Brought to us courtesy of Evian water, interestingly enough. Project alternately credited as KCPK, Various Arists, and Evian.

(August 2003)
The photograph above was taken by Agathe, a super cool friend who is back in Europe.

Agoria - Sky is Clear
Agoria's creepy "Sky is Clear" will have you dreaming of phantom kangaroos and backwards-talking Cheshire cats. Come to think of it, maybe you should just skip this one. I hate phantom kangaroos!

Alizee (Alizée) - Gourmandises
Alizee's "Gourmandises" was buoyed by a video dripping with not so subtle sexual symbolism (I pedantically proffer that it alludes to John Everett Millais's painting "Apple Blossoms (Spring)"). The song itself is excellent, with its thumping beat, thundering piano chords, and an overall frantic quality that will have you running after giggling teenaged girls in sundresses. The remix CD is tough to track down, but well worth getting for its spectacular alternative takes.

Quiki feat. Lisa - Together
A sexy little Italo charmer boosted by mysterious, slinky keyboard bits to go with the slinky, mysterious vocals of Lisa—though the word "Together" might be plucked directly from Raw Silk's 1982 disco classic "Do It To the Music."

Deepest Blue - Deepest Blue
Deepest Blue have written a song called "Deepest Blue," which features a video that is both deep and blue. And what does the song sound like? Smooth house meets smooth male vocals overtop a smooth melody that enjoyed much smooth success on the Top of the Pops charts smooth!

Kurtis Mantronik presents Chamonix - How Did You Know?
Last I heard, Chamonix is a geographic region (in the Northern Alps lying at the border of France, Switzerland, and Italy). This would make Chamonix the Boston, Kansas, or America of dance music. "How Did You Know?" is a disco strings thumper with a passionate vocal performance.

Layo & Bushwacka! - It's Up to You (Shining Through) (Lee Cabrera Remix)
Layo and Bushwacka!'s "It's Up to You" gets a memorably nutso remix treatment from Lee Cabrera. Dig the crazy, cut-up vocals!

Despina Vandi - Gia
Despina Vandi's "Gia" throws some Greek bits into the Eurodance blender. I'm going to coin a new expression: "There is no more culture clash. Only culture mash." Oh wait, I see that somebody else has said that already. Never mind. *Sigh*. Used a year later to great effect in Romanian gymnast Catalina Ponor's gold medal-winning floor exercise routine.

Kate Ryan - Mon Coeur Resiste Encore
Kate Ryan's "Mon Coeur Resiste Encore" began life as "Scream for More." I guess with the success of her French-language tunes, she thought it wise to create a French version of this one as well.

United - Go Baby Go (2000 Mix)
The Polish group United revamped their "Go Baby Go" in 2000. The bit where they digitally play with the chick's vocal is especially delightful.

DuMonde - Human (Original Mix)
DuMonde, aka JamX & De Leon, kings of epic trance (I still get misty eyed when I think of their "Forever" off the Gatecrasher Red compilation), return with the mighty "Human (Original Mix)." Trance: Not Dead Yet!

Monika Kruse - Latin Lovers (Voodooamt Remix)
Monika Kruse's "Latin Lovers (Voodooamt Remix)" is a loopy, airy piece of Latin house sure to please the hot-blooded freaks on the Eurodancefloor.

Fabio Ferraro - Volare 2003
But if it doesn't, perhaps Fabio Ferraro's dreadful dancefloor remake of the classic "Volare" will do the trick.

Jason Nevins presents UKNY feat. Holly James - I'm in Heaven (Club Mix)
Jason Nevins, who gave us some funky remakes and remixes, "presents" UKNY featuring Holly James. Their song "I'm in Heaven (Club Mix)" is burning up dancefloors all over the world. The sample is from Michael Jackson's "Human Nature." (For those who like to keep score, SWV used the same sample in their 1992 R&B hit "Right Here.") The lyrics are more cringe-worthy than moving, but the vocal performance is good. Somebody always asks what this is when I play it!

ABBA - On and On and On
ABBA's "On and On and On" is arguably the catchiest ABBA song never to be released as a single. It contains one of my favorite ABBA couplets: "So I took advantage of the fact that I'm a star / Shook my hair and took a casual stroll up to the bar."

The compendiums:

2001 06/07
2001 08
2002 01
2002 01
2002 01/02
2002 04
2002 06
2002 09
2002 10/11
2002 12/2003 01
2003 02
2003 03/04
2003 05/06
2003 06
2003 08
2003 09
2003 10/12
2004 02/07
2004 07/09
2004 11
2004 12
2005 01/03
2005 05/09
2005 09
2005 12
2006 03
2006 06/09
2006 11/12
2007 01/03
2007 04/05
2007 06/07
2007 09/10
2008 01
2008 04/06
2008 06/07
2008 09/12
2009 02
2009 04/06
2009 08/09
2009 10/11
2010 01
2010 02/03
2010 04/07
2010 08/10
2010 11
2011 01/03
2011 04/05
2011 06
2011 09

© 1997—2011 King Pigeon Productions