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The Chemical Brothers – Exit Planet Dust (1995)

August 18, 2017

[Album 560/1001]

“In 1995, you’ll twist to this
As you raise your fist to the music”
– Public Enemy, Brothers Gonna Work it Out

As a big Fear of a Black Planet fan, I was quite excited when I heard the opening line to Leave Home.

On the Exit Planet Dust opening track, I believe the line “Brothers Gonna Work it Out” ends up being repeated a couple dozen times.

Combine that with the fact that this track, one that listeners could easily dance or better yet twist to, was released in 1995?

Although I recognize Chuck (probably) wasn’t referring to this song directly, I was still practically giddy!

.

.

While this album may have met the criteria for release year (1995) and twist-ability, the final part of the Chuck D quote just doesn’t apply to Exit Planet Dust.

Alas, at no point during my listens, was I inspired to raise my fist to the music.

It seems I struggle to invest emotionally in electronica.220px-Exit_planet_dust_album_cover

Ironically, although I imagine this music is designed to get people moving, I’m generally left unmoved.

With the exception of the vocal tracks.

Much like how Setting Sun stole the show on Dig Your Own Hole, Life is Sweet (featuring Tim Burgess from The Charlatans) and Alive Alone (featuring Beth Orton) are the standouts here.

So maybe I’m just not an instrumental electronica guy?

Perhaps this just isn’t fist-raising music?

Maybe I would have felt differently in 1995?

Quite possibly, as seeing that I was an awkward grade 8/9 in 1995, fist-raising (accompanied by some light twisting) might have been the only dance move in my repertoire!

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Verbalize the Positive

Credit to The Chemical Brothers for being my introduction to the genre a couple decades ago.

I’m guessing they were the gateway group for many!

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From → 1990s

15 Comments
  1. jprobichaud permalink

    I personally preferred the electronica songs with vocal tracks myself, except of course for a few Juno Reactor tunes. Life is sweet is particularly sweet here.

  2. I’ve always been confused about where electronica stops and dance starts. Maybe it has something to do with the impulse to raise limbs in the air?

    • And I was much more likely to raise at least one limb in the air for Soft Cell (which would likely be more of the latter) – so I like that definition Bruce!

  3. For me, where this record falls short is the toned down, less dance influenced ambient instrumentals. The Chemical Brothers were always better when they employed monster dance rhythms, designed strictly for the club. The first four tracks are perfect examples of mindless block rocking dance beats, and are the highlight IMO.

    • I suppose I just can’t get excited about the ‘block rocking dance beats’ – I have no doubt it’s well crafted, I just haven’t been able to get too jazzed about it yet!

  4. I got into this after getting into Dig Your Own Hole in a fairly big way. I don’t listen to them much now, cause they are a bit of a chore to get through. It seems the ‘block rockin beats’ are too good and the more ambient tracks just a bit of a trudge at times. That said, my favourite is Surrender; I think they got the balance right on that one.

    • I haven’t heard that one yet – but I suppose if it’s their album #3, nice to hear 3rd time’s the charm!

  5. I saw them live around this time and they were just incredibly good, they still are – always found this LP a bit of a headache though.

    • Encouraging to hear they’re a strong live act – I don’t think I’ve ever seen an electronic concert.
      But since these guys were my electronica gateway, it would be fitting to see them first!

  6. I never got to these guys, but at the time I was (belatedly) discovering grunge. Sorry to hear you didn’t connect with this one, if it made the list it must surely have its merits for someone!

    • Yeah the Chemical Brothers (the non vocal tracks at least) may be stuck in that ‘appreciate’ category for me.
      So I see the merits, but I think I’d prefer to join you in the belated grunge discovery!

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