As the waning days of last year faded away, the fabulous and underrated Kimberly Cole suddenly dropped a debut album so fun and brilliant it made the usual worries over all the things left undone and fear about all the things yet unknown fade into bliss. This year, the fabulous and underrated Luciana Caporaso has suddenly released the cuts from a planned US debut album meant for this year but that never saw the light of day, and it's so fun and brilliant it may well make the usual worries over all the things left undone and fears about all the things yet unknown fade into bliss. Only it'll pound them into submission first, because that's the Luciana way, and that's why we love her.
A couple tracks should be familiar to Luciana fans and clubgoers: two Billboard Dance Club Play #1s, "I'm Still Hot" and "I Like That," the latter with Richard Vission and Static Revenger, as is a finished version of "USA Let's Go Go Go," the autobiographical jam I wrote about a few months back ("golden showers" are now "April showers," and Perez Hilton gets called out in place of the awkward "give good meeting" line), produced by Dave Aude. Also included is the hot club track "Jump," the vocal version of The Cube Guys' "La Banda" that has been called "the next 'We No Speak Americano'" (which, in all honesty, is probably how any true techno song sounds to the pop-trained ear), probably because of the line "No español-ay/ We speak Italiano," and has big club hit potential for all those reasons. (The music video, below, was just released this week.) There's also a solo version of "Got My Eye On You," which was originally released as a collaborative mix with Italian DJs Nari & Milani and Cristian Marchi (included in my Songs You May Have Missed: Luciana Edition).
The rest of the album is just as catchy and well-produced as the already released material, and it's a delight to listen through. I love the 80s/90s dance/rock throwback "Glitter and Gold," and the Supermal collaboration "Top Of the World," which sounds like Fever-era Kylie Minogue (and would have made a great Minogue track), and the title track is a nice and dirty ditty that could make for a good Spring or Fall club hit (we like getting sexy when it's not too hot, not too cold - all you need is a light jacket).
Caporaso recently moved to the US, and the dance scene is...well, a little difficult around here. It can take months to a year for a great dance jam to seep its way into the clubs and onto the six dance radio stations that make up the Dance Airplay chart, and even successful dance artists are marginalized until and unless they luck into a crossover hit that the notoriously insular radio monopoly will pick up, and even then if it wasn't produced by Dr. Luke they don't take much notice. Luciana, a big star in the techno scene in Europe, is probably above the kind of endless club-hoofing that young new dance and pop artists have to do tirelessly to get attention, but she is playing Club Eden in San Diego on New Year's Eve and at the Factory in Los Angeles and the Hard Rock in San Diego in early January, with hopefully more dates added, and this kind of gig both suits her and can mean enjoying at least some of the kind of solid popularity in the US that popular DJs do. But there hasn't really been a dance star who actually performs, in the pop sense, rather than produces/mixes/DJs, which I guess is in some way the karmic balance for the way pop music works in favor of the performer.
But who knows. Luciana might not have come here to change the world - she might have just wanted to get a fucking solo album out. Who doesn't? And why shouldn't she? She has a great producing partner in Dave Aude, but someone needs to get her some good A&R and DEFINITELY some good publicity people in the States, so we can get this great music (that she can probably make in her sleep) out there in the world. I'm pretty sure we want to hear it. Look what happened with Robyn.