Top positive review
112 of 122 people found this helpful
on August 21, 2010
I enjoy electronica music, and have for at least the last 10 years. It's a manufactured type of music constructed largely with the use of computers, synthesizers, drum machines and even some acoustical instruments. Some old-fashioned music lovers feel that nothing but purely acoustical/vocal music using actual instruments/voices is the only true music. Well, so what? I'd say that almost any interesting and amusing sounds put together in a structured manner and played for the enjoyment of an audience might rightfully be considered music, and electronica is just exactly that. Some of the composers are artists and musicians second to none and I strongly suspect that electronica will become an ever-increasing fraction of the total musical output.
So, if I enjoy this type music, where might I go to find interesting sources of information regarding such music? There are many sources and word-of-mouth is probably one of the best. Well, I'm 76 and rarely go to hip concerts dominated by young people and, likewise, I'm not a part of the club scene nor do I know friends who enjoy this stuff. They think I'm a bit eccentric. So be it. Let's face it, people of my age just don't listen to electronic music. If I attempt to discuss it with them I draw nothing but blank stares. My wife (31) likes electronica and we share quite an overlap in listening to electronic dance music, but her tastes tend to lean more toward electro-pop and bubblegum, whereas I'm more interested in the hardcore electronica dance music. My best source of purchasing information has been the Amazon computer. It analyzes my past purchases and wanderings and offers interesting suggestions for what I might enjoy. I've found some excellent recordings in this way. A second source is listening to my XM car radio where I'm partial to the BPM dance channel. That's where I discovered deadmau5 (pronounced deadmouse, and the lower-case d is intentional). I heard a few songs from the "For Lack of a Better Name" CD and I ordered it the next day.
The deadmaus5 CD is an excellent recording and I've enjoyed it very much. Supurb! It's real beat-heavy stuff with a wonderful and highly varied rhythmic background. The sound is crisp and clear and nicely mixed. Voices and vocals are a minor part of the total recording except on a few of the early tracks. In some places, deadmau5 uses voices somewhat like strange musical instruments. Plus, there's all sorts of other strange sounds. You just have to get used to this electronic stuff. In some places the mood is gloomy and funeral like, but even that is fun. It's excellent dance music, that's for sure, and fun to listen to also. I'd say the listening experience in some places is closer to listening to some types of classical music than popular music. Just blot out the heavy beat in your mind, if you can, and listen to the background. It's marvelous! Some people call it Progressive House or Electro House, but I disdain using these micro-genre classifications. It's quite excellent quality electronic music, that's what it is, and it shows a lot of talent and musicianship on the part of those who put it together. Joel Zimmerman is the lead perpetrator. Bravo! I guess deadmau5 has been given and nominated for a bunch of awards, and that's easy to understand. One listen to dedmau5 music is all it takes. I'd say that it vaguely reminds me of some of the early music of Matthew Dear ond Daft Punk, two of my other favorite electronica composers. Sorry, I really don't have any other comparisons. "For Lack of a Better Name" is just an excellent album and stands alone in my book and I now own all of the major deadmau5 CD and DVD recordings. I've become a fan!
The sound quality of this CD is exceptionally high, but to fully appreciate it you'll need to have good playback equipment. I have a 100-watt per channel stereo with 7 speakers including two 12" woofers and an 80-watt powered subwoofer. I like to play the CD at fairly high, but still comfortable, volume. In that way, I feel the dramatic bass and the higher notes come across as light, delicate and playful. My system is minimal. If you ever get the chance, play this CD on a high-end system. It's just awesome!
Note: I gave this review a minor revision on 1-11-13 and I'd like to thank all the wonderful deadmau5 fans who have contributed to the extended discussion. It beats anything I've ever turned out, believe me.