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David Guetta “Nothing But The Beat 2.0”: Album Review

Virgin (2012)

Largely responsible for introducing America to the EDM scene, ubiquitous Frenchman David Guetta is either the saviour of dance music or the devil incarnate, depending on your fondness for four-to-the floor trance-pop.

Literally inescapable over the past three years, he’s not only conquered the charts with his own material but has turned up to lend a hand on nearly every R&B star’s recent and highly predictable venture into trashy Europop, many of whom returned the favour by appearing on his 2011 fifth studio effort, Nothing But The Beat.

Keen to strike while the iron’s still scorching hot, Guetta has now decided to prolong the album’s shelf life with the release of a 2.0 edition, which strips away three tracks from the original (“I Just Wanna F*** You,” “Night Of Your Life,” “Repeat”), adds four numbers from its more club-focused second disc (“The Alphabeat,” “Lunar,” “Sunshine,” “Toy Story”) and serves up another new batch of potential future hits.

Anyone hoping for a bit of respite from his trademark sound will be left wanting. “She Wolf” sees Sia continue her disappointing descent from intriguing jazz-soul chanteuse to generic rent-a-diva on a mediocre attempt to replicate the drama of “Titanium.”  Even more formulaic is Ne-Yo and Akon collaboration “Play Hard,” a brainless floorfiller which lazily borrows from yet another 90s dance classic (Alice Deejay’s “Better Off Alone”).

Elsewhere, the Skrillex-lite bass wobbles of instrumental “What The F***” and the aimless industrial electro of “Metropolis” are misguided attempts to convince us of Guetta’s underground roots that are unlikely to fool anyone, whilst “Wild Ones Two” is a generic Flo Rida-less remix of a track which already sounded like a Guetta knock-off.

“Every Chance We Get We Run,” a slightly more understated slice of Deadmau5-eseque multi-layered trance featuring Canadian twin sister indie duo Tegan & Sara, and the euphoric falsetto-led “Just One Last Time” at least attempt to rock the boat a little.

But on the whole, Nothing But The Beat 2.0 rather depressingly suggests David Guetta is still content to keep squeezing every bit of mileage out of his hugely influential but now creatively bankrupt wall of sound.

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2 / 5 stars     

About the Author


Jon O'Brien's love of music began as a six-year-old after becoming bizarrely transfixed with the 80s poodle rock of Heart, Europe and Def Leppard. Switching his attention to pop icon Michael Jackson, he then became addicted to the UK Top 40, becoming a rather pointless walking Wikipedia of chart positions in the process. Driving his poor neighbors up the wall while learning to play the drums as a teen, he toyed with the idea of becoming a musician, but in studying Journalism at the University of Central Lancashire, he realized heÕd rather write about music than perform it. Since then, he's written thousands of reviews and biographies on everything from bubblegum pop to death metal, but electronica remains his main passion, with everything from Aphex Twin to Zero 7 in his spare room-consuming record collection. Jon resides in northwest England near Liverpool.

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Posted in: Album Reviews, Electronic Music