Review by DjBatman|
4 stars out of 4
Everything is wrong-- and you're wrong too if you think that Moby is an
ordinary dance act just because you've heard some of his disco or techno
numbers. This album is probably the best showcase for Richard M.Hall's
talents: he easily switches between styles and genres, from the ethereal
ambient of "Hymn" to guitars and hard rock/punk ("All
that I need is to be loved"; incidentally, Moby later recorded a
completely different electronic version that appeared on a compilation
cd, after getting rid of the rock bits and distorted vocals...). Fast
drum loops, scratches, ragga snippets and female vocals are the ingredients
for the happy hardcore of "Feeling so real", while you might
be shocked by the weirdness of a very short piece consisting of repetitive
funky beats and one single vocal sample saying "Let's go free".
At this point you might be relieved by a more ordinary (but still fine)
dance number ("Everything is wrong") but then suddenly you get
another punk rock/sliding guitars attack with "What love".
Just when you think you have understood the formula of the album, there's
another radical change: you still get some beats (including the
only recognizable sample in the whole album: a classic break pioneered
by Coldcut and PM Dawn -whose true origins remain still obscure for me-
used as a backing track for "First cool hive"). The lyrics
and music become sad, the arrangments are close to those of certain film
music composers and this is when you reach some of the gems of this disc:
the beautiful "Into the blue", sung by Mimi Goese; ambient
piano soundtracks like "Everything is wrong" and "God
moving over the face of waters" (which was actually used the movie
"Heat"). The final -another stunning Mimi Goese vocal
performance- is called "When it's cold I'd like to die".
Electronica is a reductive definition for Moby - please file under eclectic.
Here's what others reviewers have to say:
"...Legitimate classical influence and a visceral Christian
faith elevate [Moby's] art--but a solid grounding in house-trance-jungle
grooves renders him capable of delicious sonic candy. Remarkable..."
4 Stars - Excellent Rolling Stone 3/23/95, p.125
"...suggests...how one-dimensional most
techno-trance-jungle-ambient-progressive house albums can be.
Moby's...major-label debut embraces all those sounds, plus elements of
funk, punk, metal, industrial, blues, classical, New Age, and art
rock..." 9 - Highly Recommended Spin 3/95, p.93