Les Rhythms Digitales Darkdancer

With samplers, as well as vintage synths and classic records at their disposal, DJs and musicians can access the past in ways that allow them to play with time — if not play time. The new albums from French electronic acts Les Rhythms Digitales and I:Cube take those possibilities in respectively different, but equally enjoyable, directions. Dark Dancer is an ’80s album that never happened, a trashy wonderland of electro-funk and new wave pop set in the non-discriminating and hyper-hybridising imagination of producer Jacques Lu Cont. His songs celebrate tacky synthesisers and robotic chants while replicating riffs from D-Train and “House Nation” for the generation that can’t recognise it. He gets props for hooking up with Shannon and Nik Kershaw for guest vocals on “Take A Little Time” and “Sometimes,” although the former sounds like it wants to be a classic from the days of Paradise Garage, while the latter belongs in a forgotten ad for MTV. (Astralwerks)