LABEL: Metropolis Records
REVIEWER: Matthew J.
After his massive 2006 club hit, "Skullfuck," from the debut EP of the same name, the world thought it knew what to expect from UK DJ and producer Geoff Lee, otherwise known as Modulate. It turns out we're only half right. While there's plenty of hard, slick beats and swearing on his debut full-length, as evidenced by the reappearance of "Skullfuck" and the curses and grinding loops of "Buzzsaw," it's not by any means the only thing he has to offer. "Hard and Dirty" is, as its title suggests, all about raw sexuality instead of cartoonish violence, and "Raising Lucifer" is a successful crossbreed of the club-ready power noise that's already become a Modulate signature and straight-up terror EBM, complete with thickly distorted vocals. What's ultimately more noteworthy about this album than Lee's ability to bring diversity to the world of heavy electronic dance music, however, is how much fun he seems to have while he's doing it. Lee was a DJ before he was a producer -- "Skullfuck" was originally created as a dance floor segue between specific Combichrist and Grendel tracks -- so his music always has that innate sense of how to pack people onto the dance floor, and with its enthusiastic crowd noise, hard synth line, and pumping power noise beat, "Revolution" pays homage to that shared sense of excitement. Lee seems to share it, as well; despite his accomplished DJ career, there's a giddiness that infects his music, as opposed to the more jaded attitudes that sometimes creeps into dance tracks, and nowhere is that more palpable than on his cover of The Prodigy's classic techno track, "No Good," all thumping rave energy and sped-up female singing. While his tracks might occasionally threaten to "rip out your eyeballs" and worse, it's clear Lee's real goal is to keep you moving to the bass line and shaking to the kick drum. Play this album with the bass turned up, and you won't be able to resist.
Visit Geoff Lee on the Web at www.modulateonline.com.
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