Black Strobe

Chemical Sweet Girl

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Black Strobe's Ivan Smagghe and Arnaud Rebotini are one of those hyperhybridized left-field house remix/production teams that draws from just about every form of dance music from the '80s onward, whether it's Italo-disco, new wave, EBM/industrial dance, acid house, electro, or a dozen other things. In 1997, they made a sizeable impact in underground dance with the "Paris Acid City" single; since then, they've only sporadically released their own productions, opting to instead be more prolific as remixers (Röyksopp, Playgroup, Cosmo Vitelli, Martini Bros., the Rapture, Dave Clarke) and DJs. This CD release ties up seven tracks from the duo's scattered releases on Trevor Jackson's Output label. Though it's over 40 minutes, it's considered an EP. It's a service to clubbers who don't buy vinyl, since each track has attained at least some level of notoriety. Even when the remixing tables are turned (as they are on the last two selections here), Black Strobe's tracks maintain a sleazy, sweaty edge. The crucial thing to consider is that, despite a sound that isn't too far removed from electroclash, there isn't a hint of irony; Smagghe and Rebotini are clearly too occupied with getting down to making memorable dance tracks to think about any other motive.

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