With a title like this it would be safe to assume that this album is a jaunt back to the ‘90s but at times the latest from the Frenchman goes back even further, with some of the tracks borrowing a distinctive ‘80s feel, mainly through the use of airy vocals and tacky synths. Opener ‘Rave Kids Go’ displays all the bad qualities of 1986, while vocal track ‘Under Your Sun’ sounds like every anthem you remember from the mid ‘90s that thoughtlessly placed a 4/4 beat over some poor woman’s attempt at inspirational singing – N-Trance and Alice Deejay in particular spring to mind.
What’s so frustrating about this album is knowing that Vitalic is capable of producing some palatable techno. Yet, for some reason he’s opted for the clubtastic David Guetta style of production, possibly for a commercial purpose or maybe he’s just jumping on a band wagon. Whatever his logic, it’s not working. Modeselektor manage to get away with this kind of behaviour because their albums are punctuated with songs that vary greatly from the humdrum dance numbers but Rave Age seems to be incessantly hammering home the same jaded format with minimum thought and maximum womp. It’s like watching someone trying to deliver you a pizza through a keyhole, they keep mashing it and mashing it until all you’re left with is cheesy lumps on a dusty floor that you’d forgotten was even there a long time ago.
Ok, so let’s not forget to give credit where credit’s due. ‘La Rock 01’ can be considered a bit of a classic and it fit into that whole 2manydjs era of nonsense pretty damn snugly but even that sounds dated at this point. Most of the tunes on Rave Age seem like they’re produced before that song or else poor copies of it that are desperately trying to highlight it’s good points when actually they’re reminding you how terrible it was in the first place. Perhaps some applause should be granted Vitalic for having the cojones to release an LP that’s so blatantly obsolete but he may sneak up behind you, record it and distort it into oblivion for his new album Bland Claps for Lovers of the Year 2001.