Un

Studio Album by released in 2009

Un review

Dan Black demonstrates his own system of values

After the split of the alternative band The Servant its members went independent, one of them was Dan Black, a talented young musician possessing, by the way, quite good vocal skills. Dan’s first well-known song was the Internet hit HYPNTZ, mixing Notorious B.I.G.’s track Hypnotize and Rihanna’s Umbrella. Yet its success could well remain one-time and nobody would remember about Black anymore if he did not release his solo debut album Un this summer. The title is translated from French as ‘One’ (Dan lives in Paris and it is quite probable he wil call his next record Deux (‘Two’). As for is debut it proves to be very promising. It is a great electronic music collection offering both simple beat known to the listeners and some new non-standard decisions. Yet what you actually could hardly expect from the young artist are the really smart lyrics. His profound looks on the world’s arrangement, society, demonstration of his own system of values and a fresh fire in the songs about relationship – everything does Dan Black credit and significantly raises the value of Un.

New possibilities to adopt old techniques on Un

Finding new possibilities to adopt old, time-proved techniques Dan Black displays an uncommon inventiveness, sense of humor and originality. In rather short time – a little longer than 45 minutes – the singers manages to tell a lot and only the essential things: all the topics he touches upon are important and interesting to the widest circle of listeners. Each of the compositions is a way to express what Dan thinks of the modern life, creative work and freedom. The album opens with the track Symphonies built on the beat from Rihanna’s Umbrella but quite different from it – here you can hear a beautiful choir singing sounding throughout the song, and Dan’s own sensual singing and a new memorable tune. A danceable composition U + Me = is of course devoted to a relationship, it is a wonderful love confession refined with most interesting metaphors, while the song Ecstasy pleases with the variety in the accompaniment (there are the sounds of fiddles, electro guitar and keyboards in it) and Black’s voice wide range performing another contagious melody. Female vocals refine a club track Alone worthy of the best DJs, whereas the R&B ballad Cocoon conquers with its romantic lyrics, heartfelt singing and soft backing vocals. Another love track Yours has undoubtedly become one of the best on the album: amazing unearthly effects and a danceable beat underline the lyrics’ emotions. The disco elements define the composition Pump My Pumps, while Black’s masterful songwriting is best revealed on Cigarette Pack, a new hit candidate due to its complicated tune and unusual bitter-sweet atmosphere. A life-affirming number I Love Life can be called filler although it also pleases with a nice melody and the record closer is another ballad Let Go reminding of Jason Mraz’s works with its lightness and refined with an unforgettable electro guitar solo.

The album Un is laconic and succinct just like its title

Today it is rather difficult to surprise anybody with various combinations of electronic audio effects and contagious beat. Besides there are enough of those whose thoughts are worth being written down and quoted to friends among the enormous variety of bands’ songwriters and performers. Yet Dan Black has succeeded in creating music of a good quality and writing remarkable lyrics, so all together it is united in a collection with the minimum of shortcomings, and most of these songs are sure to become hits as the time passes. The album Un is laconic and succinct just like its title. At the same time there are not many negative emotions on the record which means that Black is positive: a dream can come true if one really wants it. It is exactly what his own example shows. The single bravely takes a seemingly finished base and puts his ideas on it layer by layer creating a new original piece. Hopefully he will have enough of inspiration to write more than one hit to come and Un is only the first of brilliant and notable albums sequence.