Even if you are old enough to have been there when this music was happening, chances are you didn't want anything to do with these bands (except maybe James Black & The Whites). You see, punk was happening, and Ze Records were releasing both No Wave records AND downtown disco like the tracks on this comp.
Boy, the music on these CDs sounds good now! I am very glad that Ze Records is back, and can't wait to see what unfolds from them as time passes. Meanwhile, 'Mutant Disco' is a great way to spend some of the cash sitting in your trousers, and is a record that you can live with. The tracks you love at first will fade into the scenery as new favorites start to emerge with repeated listening's.
- Was (not was) Wheel Me Out With rhythm guitar that reminds me of The Clash This is Radio Clash and maniac lead breaks, plus tasteful horn solos, this track is a good start to the comp.
- Material & Nona Hendryx Busting out The synth is like Blondie Heart of Glass, but the vocals are more intense and soulful.
- Cristina Drive My Car Her voice will make you think that current NY band W.I.T. had this record in their box when they first planned their sound. The song is a Beatles cover
- Kid Creole & the Coconuts Annie This song has become one of my four faves (along with the other Kid Creole, the Don Armando and the Coati Mundi tracks). Great melody, very upbeat. I swear I have heard this on mainstream radio in Poland.
- Aural Exciters Emile (Night Rate) Moody and mysterious, like a female Brian Ferry sing Dance Away. Then there are these background voices and screams that sound like a Halloween haunted mansion tour...
- James White & the Blacks Contort Yourself The song that everyone who buys this record owns already, I'd wager. Still great though! James Chance knew what to do to make disco rock.
- Lizzy Mercier Descloux Funky Stuff Lizzy has that cool voice you can't help but love. This song is a funk/disco stormer with music (and background vocals) that sound like some of the disco bands that evolved from funk, like Kool & the Gang.
- Garçons French Boys Heavy duty pulsing synth with male lead vocals and female backing voices. Everything is in the right place, but this song doesn't hook me in the way others on this set do.
- Don Armando's 2nd Av. Rhumba B. Deputy Of Love I love this track! Nice hand held percussion and a beat which picks you up. The verse, the chorus - all of it is high nrg and happening.
- Gichi Dan Cowboys & Gangsters Lots of tongue in cheek bravado. Male vocals with lots of backing voices, funky bass, piano and sax.
- Cristina Blame it on Disco Sounds like Marilyn Monroe singing, with a strong Caribbean feel to the music, male backing vocals, and flute.
- Garçons Encore l'Amore To me, this is the least distinctive track on disc 1. It just doesn't grab me. Male vocals are sung in French.
Disc 1 faves: 4,9
- Cristina Disco Clone This song is a real kick. It is very immediate, and will be one of your first favorite cuts on this set. A male talking voice describes his experiences as he enters a disco and sees so many girls that look like twins. Cristina plays the disco clone and gives a chorus that will make you smile. I own the original 12inch of this, and Cristina's name is nowhere on it. The white sleeve has a logo which says 'Disco clone', and a prominent sticker which says 'Produced by John Cale.' Side A is an English version and side B is a French version. If you have ever heard the John Cale track The Insult on the Trash*Palace 'Positions' CD you will agree that it is John Cale speaking on Disco Clone.
- Coati Mundi Que Pasa / Me No Pop I My #1 favorite on this 2 CD set. This song is so infectious, that I CANNOT listen to it without getting wrapped up in it (I can't type and phase it out!). Coati Mundi make me want to brush off my Spanish skills so I can sing along with the background vocalists in perfect time. The girls sound like Judy Nylon and Patti Palladin (Snatch), and the rhythms are coming out of every corner.
- Kid Creole & the Coconuts I'm A Wonderful Thing Baby Two in a row - this song is killer fine! The music starts off sounding like Ministry Work For Love, but this song goes so much further. It moves in many directions, all of them well realized and melodious. I love the "and that's a fact" vocal tag and the cool rhythms.
- Was (not was) Out Come The Freaks This sound can scare away many people - it is straight up disco like the women from Funkadelic do on their 'Invasion of the Booty Snatchers' record as Parlet.
- Lizzy Mercier Descloux Fire A cover of The Crazy World of Arthur Brown, with think French accent.
- Aural Exciters Spooks In Space This song is fun. It sounds like a cross between The Cure Love Cats and the Star Wars cantina band, with a touch of Ghostbusters thrown in. Quite a kick!
- Was (not was) Tell Me That I'm Dreaming Very busy sounding track with samples of dialogs.
- Caroline Loeb Narcissique French female vocals. Not very distinctive sounding to me.
- The Waitresses I Know What Boys Like Doesn't everyone know this song already? It IS a classic, but it also is - by far - the most well known song on this compilation. I wish Ze chose a less known Waitresses song. I don't know much by this Akron Ohio band except for this song and their Christmas song.
- Lizzy Mercier Descloux Mission Impossible A very well down instrumental that you will want to hear again and again. It makes your blood race.
- Marie & les Garçons Re Bop Electronic Like a rockabilly electronic track. Kind of like Silicon Teens or Plastic Bertrand with sleigh bells providing the rhythm. A pretty interesting track, and not at all disco, if disco is not your thing right now.
- Garçons French Disco Boys edit Ray gun sounds and everything. The track is pretty much what you would think it is.
- Casino Music Faites le Proton Nice closer to this massive set. Lots of texture and multi-tracked female backing vocals bring a lushness to the sound of this cut.
Disc 2 faves: 2, 3, 10