jack penate everything is new
  • MONDAY, AUGUST 10, 2009

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Three cheers for enthusiastic UK dance-pop! Jack Peate's CD, Everything is New is full of delicious, ridiculously catchy, unapologetically happy dance-pop tracks. The novel thing is that the joy is in the beats and the life-affirming lyrics, but the songs never venture into the realm of high-pitched, starry-eyed sugarpop. Instead, it's a sweaty summer record that wants you to dance in the streets as well as the clubs, have close encounters with appetizing strangers, and live it out.

The delightfully corny refrain of "Be the One" is full of unabashed wonder as Peate marvels, "did we really fall in love?" Perhaps that's the experience that inspired the title track, which is all about personal resurrection. Something happens that changes everything, without anything actually changing. Suddenly it's the first day of your life, suddenly you're looking at the scenery that you've tired of long ago, and seeing it as if for the first time. Things you've never noticed are popping out at you, colors are brighter, even the air tastes better. This kind of ecstatic lust for life continues with "Tonight's Today," which spins funky, retro beats and crows about the infinite immediacy of the present moment.

The second half of the album lets you take a breather, because let's be honest, living for every moment can get exhausting. The comedown of "Every Glance" sees Peate acknowledging his flaws, but still carries a positive outlook. "Let's All Die" is a tongue-in-cheek death wish, singing "out of the womb and into the tomb." So it goes.

Those are the two sides of this CD, but at heart, a life wish and a death wish are really not that different. Realizing your mortality has a way of spicing things up. Everything is New urges you to live as if every second is your first, live as if every second is your last, dance like you know you are living, dance like you know you are dying, whichever. Just do yourself a favor - do it like you mean it. - Nina Mashurova

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