March 8, 2007


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A Touch of Class, Still Sucks
ATOC Recordings, 2007

One distinct characteristic of this decade’s musical landscape is the power and respect given individuals who are in general much more at home behind the mixing board and/or off backstage someplace. Seems like everyone with a sequencer or a Casio is more intent on an aggregate producer/DJ/dealmaker role than simple rock stardom, which may not be so much a byproduct of MySpace as it is a desire not to become a victim of evil industry. At any rate, ATOC aren’t just label guys or DJ guys or all-purpose producer guys but a two-man insurgence, having broken the Scissor Sisters and The Ones while the Keystone Kops in downtown major label land were snoring. Like its predecessor, Sucks, the remixes of Still Sucks fixate on house-ing up, as best can be done, old-school disco tunes from both new and established bands. Le Tigre’s diva-shout-out “After Dark” gets made over for a proper splash at Twilo; Erasure’s “Don’t Say You Love Me” undergoes radical percolation therapy, and the Flying V guitars come out for Scissor Sisters’ gay-disco opus “Filthy/Gorgeous.” B Eric W. Saeger