Carl Cox Phuture 2000

Carl Cox is internationally known as the king of hard house, but as far as I'm concerned, his crown means as much to electronic music as Puffy's does to hip-hop. Unlike Sir Bad Boy, though, Cox is a talented producer. The tracks on this disc are a lot like those he spins out live, full of fat bass and hype frequencies bouncing at a pumping pace. There's a ton of other DJ/producers working this formula, but Cox has a compositional sense that's hypnotic enough to make his tracks appealing to those who wouldn't even bother listening to house. My beef with Cox is that his music never really has anything to say, ideologically or aesthetically. He's a lot like Puff — strictly about the party — which in rave life, basically means that you can't do much with this music unless you're on E. The high is nice sometimes, but it loses my interest when it stays on that plateau; the relentless thump doesn't help the head much either. The salsa samples on "The Latin Theme" and ragga breakbeats on "Black Shaolin" provide some relief, but the emotion is still stuck on tilt. "Phuture 2000" could be great for New Year's Eve, but it's not enough to take us into the 21st Century. (Moonshine)