Artist: Crystal Castles Track: "Untrust Us" Album: Crystal Castles [Listen] [Watch]
The noisier, harder songs from Crystal Castles grabbed my attention when I played their spectacular 2008 installment of desperate dance destruction. Now, another time through, I can't get off the opening track -- a cleaner, though still soul-wrenching dose of magic that balances on the razor's edge between crying and grooving about a cubicle to the chagrin of your coworkers. (Guilty.)
Most dance music that I like is about the first three hours of a good night out, when excess still seems like a good idea and you are comforted by collective movement. But the impossibly hip duo of Ethan Kath and Alice glass seem more interested in manipulating our expectations of such circumstance: They back a sheen of grooves and happy blips with scattered voices, abrasive noise and communication that shatters into nothing.
Theirs sounds like dance music, but songs like "Untrust Us" expose the crushing downside and lurking, inevitable regret of happiness manufactured from sound and substance. That's why it works.