DJ flayed with ugly schtick

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - Music - JAR­RAD BE­VAN

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

★ ■

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