For some inexplicable reason, the world has waited with bated breath for Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen to turn legal, and, as of June 13, 2004, that moment has finally arrived. It's commemorated with New York Minute, their unofficial coming-out party and the first film to feature the wonder twins as (relatively) mature teenagers. It's also their first big-budget film, the first to be released as a feature film, and the first to boast a soundtrack that doesn't consist of the two singing cutesy songs over a chintzy musical background. Not that New York Minute is much better. A hodgepodge of bubblegum kiddie punk, dance-pop, a rap track, and a couple of overly familiar oldies, the soundtrack is as cheaply produced as an Olsen Twins video, and about as fun. Apart from Blondie's ubiquitous "One Way or Another" and maybe Paul Oakenfold's passable remix of Elvis Presley's "Rubberneckin'" and perhaps Jason Mraz's Sly & Robbie remix "Curbside Prophet '04," this is faceless, generic music, gliding by on its polished surface and leaving less impression than the picture of Mary-Kate in a Metallica T-shirt on the back cover. The one promising cut, Wakefield's cover of David Bowie's "Suffragette City" with Mary-Kate on vocals, falls flat, since she's buried in the background behind layers of stomp-box processed guitars. It's hard to get too upset about the blandness of New York Minute, since it was designed to be a piece of product, but it's nevertheless a bit of a shock that it's as faceless as it is. One final note: the "Exclusive Fold-Out Poster of Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen!" promised on the sticker on the front cover is simply the picture that's revealed when the liner notes are opened up.
New York Minute Review
by Stephen Thomas Erlewine
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