Before delving into a world of glitchy, hypnotic sounds, Quentin Dupieux, aka Mr. Oizo, greets his listeners on the first track with a robotic voice’s explanation to what lies ahead: “Good morning. This is me again. Mr. Oizo. I just recorded some new stuff. I don’t know what it is exactly… But I love it. Now let’s start.” And start it does. Jumping directly into a track as abrasive in title (“Camelfuck”) as it is in sound, Mr. Oizo doesn’t deviate much from his usual euphoria – a sonically pleasing cacophony of bleeps and blips that meld with the soul in such a way that it’s hard not to engage.
Unfortunately, this album isn’t a very cohesive cut, switching speeds at breakneck levels into dips on droll tracks like the impossibly flamboyant “Oral Sax” or his short ode to the ’90s, “Edn”. But aside from a lack of fluidity, the album has triumphant moments that wouldn’t be out of place in a dingy basement club in Berlin. “Cheeree” is equal parts trance and industrial, and should have no problem rattling your sub woofers, nor should album closer “Druide”.
Mr. Oizo has played all over in Europe and his native France, but has yet to make a big splash in the US. He’s a name some may recognize, but he hasn’t quite hit the mark just yet in our home market, and sadly albums like Stade 2 aren’t going to be the boost to get him there. It’s a little too messy, and lacks any real identity.
That’s not to say, though, that Stade 2 is one to be overlooked altogether. There are shining moments like the ironically titled “Douche Beat”, or the all-too-short “Chiffon”, which could easily be a Madlib throwback. These and a few other facets of Stade 2 offer some promise for Mr. Oizo. In fact, it’s only a matter of time before he drops a single that will catapult him to the limelight. Right now, however, the album’s a little too incoherent for even the most devout of electroheads.
Essential Tracks: “Douche Beat”