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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on November 30, 2011
If I could only find another piece of art that paints a perfect picture of the distinction between fire and ice in expressive form than Kaskade does, then I'd say there is one better than his new album. On October 25th, 2011, American Producer/DJ Kaskade released his seventh album in the United States, "Fire & Ice" which debuted #1 on Billboard Dance/Electronic Albums, for obvious reasons. Kaskade's recent success in the music industry, specifically in the House/Electro House genre, can by no means be deemed undeserved.

This album was structured in order to provide a distinction between the musical influences that Kaskade uses to define what this "Fire" of his must be as opposed to what "Ice" must be. He provides 10 tracks in the first part of the album, the Fire side, and another ten on his Ice mix. Both sides of the album have the same track titles with the respective artists featured, however, the 2nd side of the album holds the ICE version of the track, which is simply the self-remixed version of the original track (found on the Fire side/1st side). By doing this, Kaskade looks to give you the high tempo, deeper bass types of songs meant for keeping a dance party going, while having the more trance-like beats with slower tempo, and in essence, more chilled vibes.

Kaskade's album includes two chart-topping singles, "Eyes" and "Turn It Down", which are accompanied by Mandy Glendhill and Rebecca & Fiona (vocal artists) respectively. Both of these songs include impressive vocals able to bring out whatever emotion Kaskade aimed for his listeners to feel, no matter who the listener. Kaskade uses vocals along with sensational melodies created through a well-put-together array of synthesized sounds: from deep synth bass to elektronische-type sounds (with "Lick It"); a variety of electronic instruments. As I had attended Identity Music Festival in Bristow, VA, I can speak first hand for his success in integrating the crowd with these two tunes, with the help of lights to accompany the mostly 120 beats per second songs, almost a desirably overwhelming amplification of music representation. In "Lick It", which features famous dubstep artist Skrillex, he mixed dubstep with electro house to form a three genre hybrid destined to go down in electronic music record books.

In the ICE side of the track, Kaskade uses mostly a tempo of 90 BPM, accompanied with less synthesized sounds in the track to produce a softer song that could almost put you to sleep, happy. By applying less sounds into the track, he is able to amplify each synthesized beat to put stress on the type of sound he aims for you to hear. For example, in "Eyes ICE version", he makes this heart-pounding dance beat into a slowed-down trance song that you'd expect to hear in a lounge. This emphasizes Mandy's vocals, putting stress on her lyrics, giving a similar vibe one would attain from a Rhythm and Bass song where the words are more important, rather than the beat (like in most Electronic music). Most of the songs in the ICE section follow a similar, almost non-consistent sequence just like that found in Wendy Carlos' Switched-on Bach, with different tempos used at different parts of the song, also different elements used at different times (vocals not being played the whole time). The ICE version offers almost completely different versions to the original tracks, making the remixed version almost unrecognizable if it were needed to be compared to the original.

Kaskade completely captures the elements of fire and ice with his musical representation. He does a successful job of making each track unique in its own way, while still keeping the theme of Fire and Ice for each track, completely seen in the way the listeners react to the beat. He has shown the significant advancement in electronic music and computer music (from the good old Bell Lab days) in general, as he applies sounds from all the different genres out there to make a unique style of electro
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on December 13, 2011
It is amazing how Kaskade can cater two audiences at the same time, pleasing Elctro/House and the more chillout/lounge one. I recommend listening this album interlaced like this: A song from Fire followed by its Ice version. This will make you realize how distinct the sound spectrum can become just like one transitions from the dance floor to the lounge to rest and right back to action. Fire and Ice indeed!
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on November 13, 2011
A nice mix of old and new Kaskade styles. I would rate this in my top three For Kaskade. The first half of he album being my favorite.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on December 21, 2011
This is my first exposure to a full Kaskade album, and unfortunately it was not as high quality as I was expecting. I've seen his name floating around everywhere, and I've seen multiple of his album out there in the marketplace. I figured I would give his newest one a listen and I wasn't impressed.

In regards to the concept for the album, I would think it's massively creative...If Sunlounger hasn't done the same thing on his last three albums...Although I have to say the Downtempo side of the Sunlounger albums is much higher quality than the "Ice" side of this album. I literally did not like a single song on the Ice side, while the downtempo is generally my favorite on Sunlounger's albums.

To get specific, in my opinion this album has 2 gems. "Lessons in Love" and "Llove". The former is an awesome club feel track that got me moving the instant the chorus hit, and I think it's the best on the album. The latter is more of a deep track and it would easily go on my all time favorite list if not for the lyrics. They seem really immature and shallow. Replace the lyrics with something actually meaningful and it would be a real emotional mover.

Overall, I wouldn't spring to buy the album just for those two tracks. Ironically, if this album was just entitled "Fire" and it didn't include the second side, I would easily give the album a 4-star. But that second side is just way too experimental and juvenile sounding to even begin to like.

If you do end up purchasing, I hope you enjoy it more than I did! You just might considering the other three reviews are 5-star =)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on February 3, 2012
A bunch of great tracks and another awesome album from Kaskade. Like his prior albums, it's a mix of dance techno with more soulful tracks mixed in. The cool thing about this album is that it comes with two CDs, the second is a remix of the first. Sometimes one version of a song is much better than the second, overall a very strong combination.
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on March 30, 2012
Kaskade's albums are those that you repeatedly play week after week. Fire and Ice doesn't disappoint in it's quality but sort of uses a different formula that can be a bit of a let down in some moments. If he would have stuck to his former concepts, I think that could've been seen as not trying to hard to appeal to the new listeners and that is actually a good thing. The introduction of Neon Trees as well as other male vocalists is definitely a slight shock to those of us who are accustomed to hearing female vocalists throughout his productions, and that feels a little alienating. Good decision on keeping Becky Jean Williams, Haley, and bringing in Rebecca and Fiona and Quadron , but Mindy Gledhill has numerous appearances in Dynasty and quite frankly, she is the vocalist with a less-than-average voice. I hope this is the last collaboration between Kaskade and Skylar Grey as well. I would have been happy to have seen SunSun in the vocal credits, as well as Polina but hopefully Kaskade releases future singles with such vocalists singing over his sensuous beats.
This double-cd album could have been slimmed down omitting some versions of Fire and other versions of Ice and one disc would have sufficed. Still, the album is great throughout and highly enjoyable, skipping over the tracks that sound like filler, which includes Lessons In Love and Ice. Overall, this work shows that Kaskade has kept it real and hasn't yet sold out like David Guetta has. David Guetta's "Nothing but The Beat" was the biggest let-down in dance music. Kaskade stays true to his style, using progressive house synths and lounge beats which is definitely refreshing. His evolution as a DJ and producer is noticeable and admirable, and Fire and Ice leaves nothing to be desired.
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Kaskade appeared on my Amazon recommendation list any number of times plus I've heard him on my XM car radio BPM Channel. I didn't think much about it until I read several accounts of him being associated with deadmau5, one of my favorite electronic composers. That did it. I ordered the "Fire and Ice" album.

Fire and ice comes as two CDs, one titled Fire and the other Ice. Makes sense. Sorta. In any case, It's good quality electronica music. I'd regard it as kinda backgroundish. That is, I have trouble sitting down and listening to a whole CD, let alone two, but I enjoy having it on as I'm doing other things. It's interesting and enjoyable music. To me, it's somewhat too popish and has far to much emphasis on vocals, but that's just a personal thing. I seldom pay much attention to vocals. The vocals are quite good, I might add, it's just that I more enjoy the electronic gymnastics. Perhaps I should indicate that the "instrumental" background for the vocals is quite good, but the vocals tend to diminish the background. Alas, Matthew Dear has gone the same way I'm sorry to say. I have a slight preference for the Fire CD over the Ice CD and I'm at a loss to explain why. I guess Fire just hits me a little closer to where I'm at, and the next listener might feel just the opposite. Go figure.

I'm hard pressed to rate this CD. It's good, no question. The question is how good? Is it compelling listening? Well, no. Would I rank it as high as my other favorite electronic acts, such as deadmau5 or Daft Punk. No, but that's setting the bar pretty high. I could see giving the Kaskade CD set a 4.5, but I have no way to do that. I'll list it as a 4 with a little apology.

Gary Peterson
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on February 2, 2012
Kaskade is unmatched, the style the beat, the vocalists. This album is worth every cent. All of Kaskade's stuff is great, but this is his best by far. If you're new to Kaskade and you can't decide which album to get, pick this one.
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on March 1, 2013
This CD is really amazing, top quality work. The Fire CD has all the big tracks you've heard and love. However, the Ice CD really caught me off guard. If anyone does a "chill" version of a hot EDM track, too often that means a lower tempo, watered down, and boring version of the original. Not with Kaskade. He's managed to take all of the hot uptempo tracks and completely re-imagine them into an exciting down-tempo version that still keeps your head bobbing and a smile on your face.

Case in point... If you only listen to one Ice track before buying this, check out "Lick it". It will take you a bit to even recognize how it is the same song, but it's no less brilliant than the original.

To sum it all up:
When I bought this CD it was for Fire. But when I listened to Ice, I was completely blown away. If there was a rule book that defined how chill remixes should be done, this CD should be listed on the front page as required listening.
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on February 23, 2015
I heard a few of his tracks on Pandora and figured I'd try his album. There is absolutely no mix on here. One track to the next. Poor vocal flow. I have bought a few of Armin Van Buuren's vocal dance sets and was very impressed, and was hoping for the same here, but Kaskade didn't deliver. It almost sounds like a club DJ. If you're looking for some of the top DJ's in the world ... Digweed, Cattaneo, Nick Warren, Dave Seamen are a few that are a cut above the rest; Digweed and Cattaneo really have taken it to such a intelligent level of progerssive house and dance that really they stand out more than anyone. Kaskade needless to say will stay on the back burner. Don't waste your $$ on this. Buy Digweed Live in Miami or any of his Transitions really. Cattaneo's Parallel or Renaissance Masters series or Sequential are just amazing also. Sasha's Involver too.
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