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Music Review: Serge Devant – Rewind

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On his second full-length set, Russian DJ Serge Devant explores the sounds that inspired his foray into the world of dance music during the early ’90s. Placing thoughtful reconstructions of club classics like The KLF’s “3 a.m. Eternal” and New Order’s “True Faith” alongside soul-infused originals such as “When You Came Along” and “Ghost,” Rewind captures the authentic melodic qualities of days gone by while remaining contemporary and relevant in production quality.

The CD is largely a vocal affair, with vocalists Hadley, Polina, Rachael Starr and Coyle Girelli pitching in. Standout performances in this realm include Hadley’s understated yet stylish turn on “Ghost” and Polina’s alluringly pensive delivery of “When You Came Along.”

The former track has a radio-accessible underground flow that provides the ideal platform for the tune’s hook-smart refrain. The latter blends elements of house and electronica with an atmospheric array of keyboards and percussive decor well suited for late-night sets.

Devant showcases his programming prowess on the last four tracks of Rewind. The instrumental numbers “African Fever” and “Novarupta” bear influences of trance and tribal over notable contemporary house progressions.

Rewind is that not-so-common, DJ-helmed, full-length disc that’s easily digestible from start to finish. Whether moving on the treadmill, on your own personal dance floor, or just soaking up the vibes while driving or working, this set has the right balance of variety and consistency to stimulate the bones and the brain.

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About Justin Kantor

Justin Kantor is a music journalist with a passion for in-depth artist interviews and reviews. Most of his interviews for Blogcritics can be heard on his Blog Talk Radio program, "Rhythmic Talk." Justin's work has been published in Wax Poetics, The All-Music Guide, and SoulMusic.com. A graduate of Berklee College of Music's Music Business and Management program, he honed his writing chops as a teenager—publishing "The Hip Key" magazine from 1992-1996. The publication, which was created out of his childhood home in Virginia Beach, reached a circulation of 10,000 by the time he was 16. At Berklee, Justin continued to perfect his craft with a series of 'Underrated Soul' features for The Groove from 1997-2003. This led to a companion TV show on Manhattan Neighborhood Network in 2002, as well as writing for the national Dance Music Authority (DMA). A self-described "obscure pop, dance, and R&B junkie," Justin also has penned liner notes for reissue labels such as Edsel Records and FunkyTownGrooves. He's excited to be a part of the BlogCritics team and indulge his musical fancies even further. Connect with him at his Facebook page, or via krystolfan@gmail.com.