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Too much hip-hop for a dance collection
on May 5, 2010
Of all the dance compilations available, and there are indeed many, the ThriveMix label has been one of the more consistently reliable, putting out CDs that feature a nice blend of hits from current, popular artists and lesser-known dance ingenues. With Dance Nation, you still get a good handful of techno pop from the likes of Madonna, Lady Gaga, Adam Lambert, and Cascada, but this disc also seems to mark the beginning of Thrive's turn on the hip-hop bandwagon which is slightly disappointing to me, though not at all surprising since that seems to be the way American radio is heading these days (unfortunately). Literally HALF of the album is made up of R&B songs that have been reworked into dancefloor anthems, and the results are somewhat sketchy. The tracks from Akon, David Guetta, and Jay Sean actually work really well here and don't break the high energy flow of the CD, while others from Zuper Blahq and Kanye West sound like they're straight out of the ghetto. Not to slam the whole hip-hop genre or anything, because like I said, some of it translates over extemely well to the dancefloor. But I also think the typical target audience for dance compilations like this probably isn't much interested in that style of music to begin with, and therefor doesn't need half a CD's worth of it. Normally I would love the idea of incorporating many different sounds into one, but this is plain overkill and makes Dance Nation a very uneven collection, if not misrepresented. In the end, it still has a number of tracks left that make it worth a listen, like the surprisingly well-crafted Celine Dion-esque cover of Wild Horses, and the editing/transitions are nothing to complain about. Just don't be surprised if you find your finger wandering towards the skip button every now and then.