DJ flayed with ugly schtick
CHAMPAGNE, caviar, private jets and plush hotels – French superstar DJ David Guetta is living the life.
You have to hand it to the guy, he has transitioned from underground to overground with ease.
I imagine his home has a gigantic safe with stacks of $ 100 bills in racks on racks on even more racks.
But commercial success isn’t everything. It certainly doesn’t ensure critical acclaim.
It would be brave to heap accolades on Guetta’s horrible paint-by-numbers, lowest-common-denominator pop-dance music.
His sound is easy, cheesy and – to add insult to injury – everyone is doing it these days.
And surely it must hurt his feelings when Lady Gaga or Rihanna’s collaborators steal his template only to fashion even bigger hits than Guetta has managed. Great, now Only Girl in the World is stuck in my head again.
Nothing But The Beat combines the most popular sounds in US and UK pop music, a blur of hands-in-the-air pop-trance and urban vocals.
His eardrum-assaulting kickdrums and synth stabs sound like they’ve been on a steroids bender; the lyrics an excruciating cacophony of lazy lines about clubbing, love and lust. This must be what creative bankruptcy feels like.
What’s most baffling is how very similar every song sounds. Each of the dozen tunes on disc one could be a remix of one another or a mash-up of ideas stolen from his last album.
The only thing that separates them is the guest stars. And boy, he knows how to attract ( and pay for) big-name talent.
There’s Timbaland, Flo Rida, Taio Cruz, Usher, Wil. I. Am, Chris Brown, Snoop Dogg, Akon, Ludacris, Nicki Minaj and Lil Wayne. An impressive list, I’ll admit, but not one manages a performance that encourages repeated listening.
Most of the disc-one tunes could be a single, they are all over-polished, radio-ready and utterly derivative of the Black Eyed Pea’s I’ve Gotta Feeling.
The lack of diversity makes for a very boring ( double!) album, even with all of those big names.
The only small glimmer of anything really good comes from proper singers Jennifer Hudson and Sia, who have to belt it out and are hard to be noticed over the Guetta din.
Disc two is some sort of ode to Guetta’s past, a club-focused instrumental album. Indulgent and lacking in purpose, it’s a dull, generic affair with few bright spots.
Nothing But the Beat has been hit hard with the ugly stick – repeatedly.
DAVID GUETTA Nothing But The Beat