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Shakes

Sister Self Doubt

(iamsound; US: 5 Jun 2007; UK: Unavailable)

Britain’s post-Big Beat hangover is shaping up to be something fun: with the Go! Team, Simian Mobile Disco, and Justice all releasing stellar dance albums (with Kanye West going as far as to sample Daft Punk to get in on the fun). The Shakes get into the ring with their Sister Self Doubt EP, merely serving as a compilation of their UK singles for those U.S. blog-baiters who wouldn’t hear it otherwise. So where do The Shakes sit on the strobe-light fence? From the sounds here, they’re sittin’ pretty. The title track is low-fi house funk that doesn’t really kick-off until a minute in (but when it does, the slithery synths begin crawling into your subconscious). The alternate version sounds like a demo that got reworked by Simian Mobile Disco in the interim, and almost matches the original in terms of booty-movin’. “Disneyland” is divided into two parts: the first of which comes off like a Strokes B-side under heavy remixing, the second of which begins the disappointment streak. The strobe light laser-keys keep hovering around, but the melody never goes anywhere significant (even when they bring in the cowbell!). Plus the instrumental version of the song “Air” is nothing but a blatant ripoff of dance minimalist Mr. Oizo (and is far more boring). Yet this sampler still packs a punch, hinting at good (and maybe even great) things to come.

Rating:

Evan Sawdey started contributing to PopMatters in late 2005, and has also had his work featured in publications such as SLUG Magazine, The Metro (U.K.), Soundvenue Magazine (Denmark), the Daily Dot, and multiple national newspapers. Evan has been a guest on WNYC's Soundcheck (an NPR affiliate), was the Executive Producer for the Good With Words: A Tribute to Benjamin Durdle album (available for free at GoodWithWordsAlbum.com), and wrote the liner notes for the 2011 re-release of Andre Cymone's hit 1985 album A.C. (Big Break Records), the 2012 re-release of 'Til Tuesday's 1985 debut Voices Carry, and many others. He is a current member of The Recording Academy and resides in Chicago, Illinois. You can follow him @SawdEye should you be so inclined.


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Shakes - Sister Self Doubt (Live in London)
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