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Mega Mega Mega (Bonus Track Version)

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Album Review

Following Basement Jaxx's underwhelming 2009 efforts and Groove Armada's late-2000s hiatus, the U.K. dance scene had a vacancy for a new left-field, genre-hopping collaborative outfit who were capable of conquering the charts as well as the dancefloor. Step forward South London production duo Joshua "The Count of Monte Cristal" Harvey and Graeme Sinden, aka the Count & Sinden, who have been making waves on the underground club scene for several years, thanks to their inventive blend of house, drum'n'bass, dubstep, and pop. After scoring a club hit in 2009 with the Kid Sister-featuring "Beeper," they released their long-awaited debut album, Mega Mega Mega, armed with an array of guest vocalists and an infectious mish-mash of electronic sounds which could well give them their breakthrough to the mainstream. From the wailing sirens on old-school acid rave anthem "Elephant 1234," to the Latin carnival vibes on "Desert Rhythm," to the techno-dancehall fusion of "Mega," its 12 tracks adhere to the "anything goes" mantra, in the process providing an exuberant and completely unique party soundtrack, even including a chilled-out slice of ambient electronica ("You Make Me Feel so Good") to help wind down the proceedings. But it's the eclectic list of collaborators which really kicks the album into gear. The joyous "After Dark" is a "Club Tropicana"-esque holiday anthem full of playful bongos, high-pitched synth strings, and samba beats featuring indie-folk band Mystery Jets; grime artist Bashy showcases his MC skills on the infectious "Addicted to You," a bouncy slice of progressive house, while the Queen of Dubstep, Katy B, lends her light, poppy vocal tones to the sub-woofer basslines and rattling percussion of the hypnotic "Hold Me." The album is less successful when it veers toward more urban territory. "Roll Out" is a tuneless, headache-inducing attempt at raga featuring New York experimental artist 77Klash, while opening track "Do You Really Want It" is a pedestrian attempt at dirty bass-led grime featuring Californian rapper Trackademicks, which offers little indication of the sense of fun ahead. But with an appearance from the fabulously monikered Coolio Iglesias, and tracks encompassing accordions, animal noises, and lyrics like "you're hanging with the Top Guns, and boy, I'm the Maverick," it's clear that, ultimately, Mega Mega Mega is more concerned with creating a nonsensical party atmosphere than representing the sounds of the streets, something which its iPod shuffle feel certainly achieves. ~ Jon O'Brien, Rovi

Biography

Formed: 2008 in London, England

Genre: Dance

Years Active: '00s

Mashing together the sounds of dubstep, grime, house, and other flavors of underground dance, production duo the Count & Sinden conquered U.K. dancefloors in 2008 with their infectious single "Beeper." Both triple threats in their own right — producing, DJing, and remixing — London residents Joshua "The Count of Monte Cristal" Harvey and Graeme Sinden came together in 2006 for the electro track "Tamborzuda." A year later they released the more house sounding cut "Everybody Rocking,"...
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Mega Mega Mega (Bonus Track Version), The Count & Sinden
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