Autumn has been a big season for the Ed Banger top table, for hot on the heels of the second Justice album is another opus from the prolific co-founder Mr Oizo. Stade 2 begins with something of a disclaimer, announcing in a typically self deprecating manner that “I just recorded some stuff. I don’t know what it is exactly, but I love it!”
And so the mayhem begins, with a selection of helter skelter beats, 303-derived squiggles, crazy riffs and genre hopping the order of the day. Mr Oizo is not a man with a long attention span, and that shows as each track zips between styles and moods relentlessly, entertaining but sometimes maddening.
The main riff, such as it is, of Douche Beat is something akin to a mallard on aci, its frenzied quacking going with a beefy drum track. All this is punctuated with the trademark fembot, which proclaims “beat for the douches” in pure deadpan. Snatches of funk, disco, techno and squelchy old school house make their bids for supremacy on a crowded dancefloor, with the album’s brief clearly to have a massive party at the expense of the listener’s eardrums. Shrill dentistry sounds do for the treble, while the bass squiggles have a rocky edge at times that gives them even more energy, adding even more to the short, sharp adrenalin rush Mr Oizo does so well.
And then, after half an hour or so, it’s all over – and Stade 2 sets you down in the corner by the cloakroom, a quivering wreck guilty of overdosing on good vibes. It’s the equivalent of having too much Red Bull with your vodka, or something even stronger.
Some will find this album maddening, the frequent changes of mood and direction keeping the listener gripped by the short and curlies. What you can’t deny throughout is Mr Oizo’s knack for throwing a party through his music, bringing out his mischievous side as he does so. No matter what style of music he tramples on irreverently, he does it in a way that you can’t help but warm to, in spite of the headache that might ensue.