Curtis Grand Hotel

Curtis shares Les Rhythms Digitales' obsession with '80s. His grooves on Grand Hotel are filled with classic electro trademarks and plentiful nods to Model 500 and Paul Hardcastle. If it's a tribute to the legends, it's tacky, but it's still got a bounce that puts it above the usual kitsch. Body popping 808 drums and Moog waveforms push the album's essentials, although there are a few breaks of cinematic jazz that reinvent the tracks out of their b-boy context. Aside from "All Stars," which sounds almost exactly like Kraftwerk's "Neon Lights" but with a random rearrangement of the melody, the energy on "Grand Hotel" is on high. There isn't anything tremendously innovative about it, but its fun for a good few listens. (Platinum)