Saturday, June 7, 2008


Back for More
Great source material makes this collection of remixes work. Most of the Back for More tracks come from the band’s 2006 LP Death of the Party.

The title of that LP shows off the band’s winking self-awareness. On the surface it’s self-deprecation, but the subtext is both instruction and threat. Play Death when the festivities are sagging, but risk sending every one into fits of Kudu-induced arousal.

Back does more of the same. Singer and synth player Sylvia Gordon does sound like a lab-crafted blues mama of the man-killing sort. Yes, she’s part Siouxsie Sioux, and part Annabella Lwin, but there’s a lot of pure New York nightclub monarch in there too.

Gordon’s a clever lyricist as well, capable of delivering the usual come-ons that populate most dance-club vocals, yet excels at tales of apocryphal men (“Bar Star”) and women (“Black Betty”) who are often objects of envy, admiration or spite -- sometimes all three.

Nearly everything on Back aims for dancefloor bliss, generally inflating programmer/drummer Deantoni Parks’ elegant arrangements into slick, neon-lit modern disco. Sinden’s remix of “Let’s Finish” blows the subway dirt off the original and converts the poppy tune into an electro cut. And LingLing re-imagine the brisk pace of “Playing House” as stark, echo-filled dubstep.

Kudu even revisit their own “King Kong” and include a new collaboration with DJ/dance-music luminary Armand Van Helden (the retro-massive “Your Words”).

All of it’s ideal for heating up a summer party, though by the time Back for More ended, The Typing Monkey simply tossed Death of the Party into the player and danced even more enthusiastically.

Reference materials: What are you doing without Kudu’s Death of the Party in your collection? You crushed on Bow Wow Wow, spaz-danced to The Banshees, and later discovered the rhythm and blues side of TK Records. You know what to do.