Lights of Euphoria

Querschnitt

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The electronic dance act Lights of Euphoria have been revving up dancefloors in Europe for some time with their blend of synth pop and electro-anthem energy. In this retrospective, Lights of Euphoria's punchy electro-style dance is quickly revealed as having more than the standard levels of depth for this kind of act. Querschnitt plots the development of Lights of Euphoria through the varying styles of their decade-long career, rather than simply collecting all the dance hits and singles. Their tight electro sound invokes similar dark electro act such as In Strict Confidence, but Lights of Euphoria's energy is somehow more direct and accessible. This approach accounts for this act's success on European alternative charts, and has been well rendered in the release. Tracks such as the opener, "In Love With the Night," reveal that Lights of Euphoria can target a dancefloor scene without becoming one-dimensional. While staying identifiably within the parameters of the genre, they do not fall into cliché -- and it is no clearer than on Querschnitt that Lights of Euphoria never settled on a single method and evolved with the genre. An anthem of dominated desire, "Give Me You" is rendered in chorused synth chords and strong beats, in contrast to the previous track. This sound grew out of an earlier hard electro style that is also featured on Querschnitt in less polished tracks such as "Subjection," which is a much simpler exploration both musically and vocally from early in the act's career. This release is a solid overview of Lights of Euphoria's solid progress, and makes clear that the Torben Schmidt project is not about genre-busting or experimentation. Almost half of Querschnitt consists of remixes, some of which are exclusive. Despite some big names among the remixers (such as Leæther Strip and In Strict Confidence), there is not really much that is notable in this bonus material. Instead, expect the predictable high-energy and more ambient versions of dance tracks, rather than any radical reinterpretations. The remixers, like so much of this release and Lights of Euphoria in general, have chosen the safe and direct path to audience appeal.

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