Wednesday, January 19, 2005


Lemon Jelly
’64 – ‘95
(XL Recordings)

Smucker’s doesn’t make lemon jelly. Neither does Polaner. In fact, it seems the only way you can get lemon jelly is if you make it yourself. I know this to be true only because I just came back from the supermarket. Yes, I checked.
Coincidentally, in a time when mainstream electronic music seems both inspired by and written for commercials, the London duo, Lemon Jelly feels just as rare as the citrus preserve. Their newest disc, ’64 – ’95, a self-proclaimed “Best Of album from an alternate universe” is a playful collection of time-traveling psychedelictronica that straddles the fine line of sexy ambience and cartoon absurdity. Incorporating obscure samples, also known as “the bits [they] nicked,” the Jellies go further than your Fatboys and Mobys because their vibrant humor doesn’t require the assistance of a Christopher Walken or a Ron Jeremy to prove that they indeed have one (even though William Shatner cameos on the last track, “Go” but incredibly enough, it doesn’t feel kitschy). Oddly, the only unfortunate letdown on ’64 – ’95 is also the first single, “’74 aka Stay With You,” their most unimaginative song yet utilizing a Royksopp-by-numbers-kit birthing standard European catwalk fair. Lemon Jelly works best when they experiment with unconventional flavor like sampling the aging hard rockers Masters of Reality into “’79 aka The Shouty Track.”
Refreshingly, Lemon Jelly shows us that mainstream electronica doesn’t have to sound mass-produced and packaged and apparently, that’s the way it usually is with Lemon Jelly. – Arye Dworken

RIYL: Royksopp, Chemical Brothers, Basement Jaxx
File Under: Oh, Those Kooky British DJs


Blogger See Me Repeat Me said...

"Aging hard rockers Masters Of Reality"? That is a laugh riot and a half. I've already emailed the site this review is hosted on about the hugely egregious error, but since you were the one who actually made it, I'd thought I'd inform you and say that the REAL sample for "The Shouty Track" is from the superb 1979 punk single "Horrorshow" by one of Edinburgh's youngest and first punk/post-punk bands, the Scars. They even f***ing USED some of the ex-Scars band members to perform the sampled instrumental bits live. Pls to next time get a bloody clue.

1:37 AM  

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