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Earlier this month, Cherrytree Records released in the U.S. the hard copy of Nero's debut album, Welcome Reality. The U.K. electronic dance music duo's work had already been available in other markets, and several songs from the album were already huge club hits. But the U.S. release has been followed by a tour here, which drew a full house to The Music Box last night. It was a long night, but one thing was clear -- listening to Nero DJ (in this case, just Joe Ray) -- was more exciting than listening to Welcome Reality, which is already pretty interesting.
In fact, it's the rare dance music album that is both packed with hit singles and sounds like a cohesive work, conjuring images of a dystopian future marked by ethereal female vocals and eerie beats. The DJ set illustrated that those sounds are rooted in our present-day reality.
Despite all the bright colors and wild dancing associated with today's dance parties, there's a distinct sense of discontent running through the music. Take dubstep, which made up a healthy portion of the DJ set. Its distorted bass lines and its awkward beats sound tense. Combined with the big, rave-friendly choruses of tracks like Nero's hit "Promises" it's a powerful juxtaposition.
Read the full article on the LA Weekly Music Blog