By Drew Williams
The princess of 80s bubble gum dance-pop is superfluously strutting the 2am downtown runway, while we all try to find our own catatonic groove – hoping no one is watching us. On XII, by Canadian electro-pop group Parallel, intergalactic Atari motion-music still lives – with signals and waves of life on Earth added by one who could be Madonna’s much younger, space-traveling sister.
You may not be very much compelled to dive in and shake your moneymaker unless you have an affinity for outdated synths and simple, rhythmical melodies (some of us really do) …or you just really like to move.
The dance floor is quickly flooded with the opening “Ritual Dancer” – and if you’ve been captured right away, you may not be sitting down anytime soon. Similar synth tones and electro beats pulsate us further into the night. The evocation on “Days of Summer” continues to give us something to feel good about – and a decent hook too.
The songs carry on with much commonality all the way through the album. This is a strong point and also a shortcoming. For a 46-minute stint on the dance floor this is most likely exactly what you would want, but for someone who wants to just listen to an album in it’s entirety, most will lose interest after 4 or 5 songs.
XII has very familiar elements and themes, but overall it will do a respectable job of achieving what it is intended to – get you moving under the mirror ball. The strobe-lit martini bar on the starship Enterprise is full and gyrating through some nearby galaxy and we must have been through this before.
Put on your best leotard, tiny dancer… because you’re going back to club 80s in Toronto’s trendy, techno time machine. This has surely been done many times in the past – but maybe not too often with this much consistency. Yet, this is not enough for XII to make you really want to take it back home from the club with you.