Beat Happens

Bloc Party, Silent Alarm Remixed (Vice): A track-for-track reinterpretation of British post-mod(ern) art-punk quartet Bloc Party's debut, Silent Alarm Remixed is the logical extension of the past couple of years' traipses through post-punk and lap-pop's rhythmic legacies. Additionally, the CD features the talents of 14 remixers, including M83, Ladytron, and Four Tet, and half of the tracks are compellingly flooded in sputtering harmonics. The other tracks temper yelping with dry kicks and heavily ridden snare skitters (the indie-party cadence du jour), marking a trend of dance-punk albums that are as good for boutiques as booty shaking.

M.I.A., Arular (XL): The unflagging hype directed toward M.I.A.'s debut bodes well for the crushworthy Sri Lankan-by-way-of-London. So was the wait worth it? Well, for anyone curious enough, there was no wait; M.I.A.'s mangled dancehall hooks found themselves widely distributed on mixes such as Diplo's 2004 Piracy Funds Terrorismwell before the Honda ads diluted as much as they disseminated the globalist rebel revelry. For all those relying on traditional channels, Arular's electro mélange ended up being highly useful as a multiculti primer during a year in which baile funk, reggaetón,and Baltimore Club entered the mass audience's lexicon.

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