Thursday, October 14, 2010

Same All Things

Song: Same All Things
Artist: Benjamin Diamond
Album: Cruise Control

Depending on what kind of music you listen to, there is a good chance that, thanks to a marketing budget or that all-over-everything blogger your obsessed with... you're going to hear about new songs and albums from artists you dig.  But depending on the artists you listen to... things fall through the cracks.

I recently was thinking of a band and an artist that I really dug in the past as I hadn't heard anything from them... only to find, after a bit of research, that they'd both released new albums... in 2008.  WTF?!?! Where have I been?

One of those is French singer/producer/songwriter Benjamin Diamond who is best known as the voice on the worldwide smash French House hit by Stardust, "Music Sounds Better With You."  That song, a classic that is now twelve years old (!!!) kicked off the French House movement, and started the career of not only Diamond, but Alan Braxe and Thomas Bangalter (just before he co-created Daft Punk.)  Diamond's debut album, "Strange Attitude" was a favorite of mine, a great catchy electro/house album that not only showed that Diamond was an amazing producer with an ear for melody, but a great songwriter to boot.

His follow-up, "Out of Myself," went in a completely different direction, more pop-rock... and I HATED it.  Maybe because it was SO different, and I was possibly incorrectly looking for "Strange Attitude II," but I don't even have it anymore... so it was with, let's say measured caution, that I took a listen to the now two-year-old "Cruise Control."

Well, it's not "Strange Attitude" and it's not "Out of Myself..." it's maybe a little of both, more dialed-down and singer-songwriter-y but also uses a bit of electronics and beats here and there.  With expectations in check, a couple listens have found some fruit.  I'm still wishing he'd go back to his dance roots (which I've read was actually record label pressure, so I better not hold my breath) but getting over that... "Cruise Control" has it's moments.

The album starts with three great tracks, the laid-back almost adult contemporary leaning "1,000 Lives" and "Still," and then the very upbeat "Baby's On Fire," which I believe was a single and was also used in the show "Ugly Betty."  Things also get a bit "Attitude"-like on "Same All Things," a loungy dance track, as well as "Don't Stop."  In some ways, the album is a bit schizophrenic... with the slower tracks bringing things to a bit of a halt before the disco returns.  That said, if you were also an "Attitude" fan... there is stuff on here you absolutely must hear.


Same All Things

1,000 Lives

Baby's On Fire

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