As I opened the case of the new Paul Van Dyk disk, I remembered something that a friend of mine once said: “Trance is music you don’t really have to listen to.” Expecting nothing more than a series of boring, repetitive beats, I prepared for the worst but was pleasantly surprised. Unlike many trance mix albums, which become mired in saturated, mind-numbing rhythms and synthesized progressions, The Politics of Dancing 2 bursts with enough fresh energy to act as the soundtrack to virtually anything monotonous you happen to be doing. The first disk, which is much less hard-hitting than the second, is relatively easy to listen to and progresses smoothly. Van Dyk’s masterful remix of Jose Zamorra and Damian DP’s “Transatlantic” is the highlight of disk one. Its overlapping rhythms and alteration between up tempo and down tempo beats adds complexity to an already addicting synthesizer rhythm. Another standout track is Van Dyk’s newest original single, “The Other Side,” a number influenced by the aftermath of the tsunami in Southeast Asia last year and much more mature than anything on his last album, Reflections.
Archived article by Jonny Lieberman