Sunday, February 26, 2006

Why Chillout??

I don't understand the sub-genre of electronica referred to as "chillout." There's a radio station here in Santa Fe devoted to chillout. And there's a sirius radio station devoted "chillout" music, too. The place I'm staying at has sirius, and so I've been listening some.

A few days ago I realized that I have had enough chillout. I'm increasingly feeling that chillout is another way of saying "techno that sucks." I imagine a producer making a track and it doesn't come out so good. It's not energetic enough to be trance or techno, not funky enough for house. It's the sort of thing that goes well with weak chamomile tea, not redbull. No one would want to dance or even move rhythmically upon listening to it. Delete the track and start over? Nope. It can be a chillout track and can be put on some crappy chilled compilation.

On the sirius "chill channel" yesterday I heard an absolutely dreadful chilled/acoustic version of modern English's "I'll stop the world and melt with you." Why? This should be illegal. What's wrong with people?

A few years ago I got a Hed Kandi Winter Chill compilation that was pretty good. Well, at least it wasn't bad. Each CD had maybe two really nice tracks, and the rest were boring background music. Perhaps these several tracks fooled me, or unreasonably raised my expectations, and led me to believe that something good could come from chillout. Now I'm not so sure. I never had much of a relationship with chillout, but whatever it was, it's over now.

I have nothing against the idea of chillout or downtempo. For example, the Back to Mine series, which is mostly downtempo stuff, is really good. Groove Armada's Back to Mine is awesome. But I think that anything that calls itself chillout is destined to suck.

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