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June 24 , 2019
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Joujouka­ - Are You Elovetric?

 ( NMC ,  2003 )

1.Let it Rip 130bpm 7:46 2.Pipes of Peace 132bpm 7:07 3.AI305 128bpm 5:06 4.Are You Elovetric? 130bpm 5:07 5.Dancing to Your Heart 135bpm 7:40 6.Invade01 (Joujouka RMX) 140bpm 7:25 7.Punx Play Video Game 130bpm 6:39 8.Hello Galatea! 125bpm 6:23 9.Let the Wave Flow 2003 127bpm 7:42 10.Invade02 128bpm 4:53 11.Box Rocker 130bpm 6:53

Joujouka is Tsuyoshi Suzuki, the legendary trance DJ and artist (also known as Prana, with other collaborators), Minoru Tsunoda and Hideyuki Mitsumoto, all from Japan of course. I'm not an expert in definitions but I can say their music is some kind of 80’s inspired electro with a lot of positive trance vibe, all served with an excellent production.
Starting off with a very rhythmic and distorted opening track (vocals by Tsuyoshi). A nice way to open an album. In the end the track kind of opens, preparing us for the next one­ Pipes of Peace (Maybe there’s a connection to Paul McCartney’s album from 1983), which keeps the dark atmosphere. Whispering vocals, speeding car sounds going from left to right and back, distorted guitar and somewhat ethnic percussion, are all a recipe for pure dancefloor madness. After a very sudden break AI305 starts. Again we get a track full of distorted guitars, rough vocal work and other uplifting sounds. Are You Elovetric? (T4) is one of the highlights of this album. It’s not a normal track, it’s a potential MTV Top10 hit, and a very good one. The vocals (by Maxine Harvey) combined with Joujouka’s groovy and unique percussion create a very special atmosphere. Dancing to Your Heart (T5) features some very odd vocals, wisely engineered build-ups and great synth sounds. The remix for Invade01 is the best track on the CD. A well-packed groove bomb, featuring uplifting drum sounds, hypnotizing vocals by Kyono and cute melodies. Towards the end of the track the “bomb” simply explodes, invading the listener’s mind and body (serves the name right…). Punx Play Videogame (T7) is a gesture for some famous 80’s games. Seems like Joujouka not only miss the 80’s sound, they miss the games too. As a Pacman fan it was nice to recognize some of the sounds. Apart from all that, we have some theatrical vocal work and guitar, the usual Joujouka style. Hello Galatea (T8) has a very interesting opening which is very hard to describe in words. Very moving, mysterious and breakbitish. The next track is a new version to Let the Wave Flow from their previous album- New Asians. It’s nice, nothing more. Invade02 (T10) is a very groovy percussive experience fused with vocoded vocals. Box Rocker is another groovy and uplifting track. Same recipe (and it’s tasty).

Recomendation:  It’s not trance, it’s something different. Try it! Maybe you'll discover something new.
Favorites: 1,2,4,6(!),7,10.

Review by : Timmy

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