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Music Review: France's Solveig dances to US with 'Smash'

Music Review: France's Solveig dances to US with 'Smash'

Martin Solveig, "Smash" (Big Beat Records)

August 22nd, 2012 by CRISTINA JALERU, Associated Press in News

With his boyish looks and catchy tunes, it was just a matter of time before Martin Solveig made it to the big leagues, aka the United States.

The French-born electronic DJ-producer has been toiling at the decks for almost two decades before catching both America's ear with his outgoing "Hello" and Madonna's, for whom he produced three tracks on her latest album, "MDNA," including the hit "Give Me All Your Luvin."' Solveig also worked as the house DJ at this year's MTV Movie Awards.

With the U.S. release of his fifth studio album, "Smash," Solveig wins the award for the longest crossing of the Atlantic Ocean: The album has been out in Europe for more than a year. Although it starts out as largely homogenous and nerve-dulling with its unrelenting beats, the album manages to smash through the blood-brain barrier and infect the listener with its optimistic vibe and fun lyrics.

Canadian electro-pop band Dragonette snaps up most of the dance-inducing collaborations. You cannot stop listening to "Can't Stop," and the playful "Boys and Girls," where Solveig and Dragonette's frontwoman court one another, is the most fun they'll ever have without stripping off their nuance.

Overall, "Smash" is likable, but the 13-track record is disappointingly one-quarter remixes of Solveig's bigger hits. The successful "Big in Japan" and the international jam "Hello" are gung-ho harmless, but not the best listings on the sleeve. And "Get Away From You" is a strange throwback to 1990s British punk rock, though Solveig imbues it with appealing synth.

CHECK OUT THIS TRACK: "Ready to Go" kicks you in high gear right from the get-go.