Various Artists

Electro Nouveau

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By the end of 2002, the so-called electroclash scene had extended far beyond its New York beginnings, resulting in a number of various-artists collections such as Electro Nouveau intended to embody everything fashionable about the trend. To an extent, Electro Nouveau successfully showcases what all the hoopla was about. Moonshine Records, the label that assembled this double-disc collection, brings together many of the top artists associated with the neo-electro-gone-pop movement: Chicks on Speed ("Euro Trash Girl"), Ladytron ("Seventeen"), Adult. (remixing Bis' "Robotic"), Tiga (remixing FPU's "Ocean Drive" and Felix da Housecat's "Madame Hollywood"), and Miss Kitten (Golden Boy's "Rippin Kittin"). There are also many other artists on this collection, yet the less-known ones aren't quite as fascinating, seeming instead a bit derivative. And that's partly the problem with this music: it's inherently derivative -- deriving itself from electro and synth pop. Of course, this is what's perhaps most interesting about the music, particularly for anyone who came of age in the early '80s, but after two hours the novelty begins to wane, particularly for anyone who has only a casual interest in this stuff. And for those of you with a strong interest, you'll probably feel a little cheated here. There are much better collections out there -- comprehensive ones like INCredible's This Is Not the '80s: A Nu-Wave Electro Compilation and creative ones like Ghostly International's Tangent 2002: Disco Nouveau -- that make Electro Nouveau seem like what it probably is: Moonshine's bandwagon-jumping bid in the electroclash sweepstakes.

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