Paul Van Dyk

The Politics of Dancing Vol. 2

Mute Records

On The Politics of Dancing Vol. 2 compilation, long-time European trance royalty Paul Van Dyk gives listeners a tuned presentation of his recent favorites. Though at times a tad diluted during its two-disc odyssey, it’s a tracklist in which Van Dyk abandons trance’s traditional push and pull between melancholy and euphoria, mixing in a shot of aggression.

The compilation threatens to become passive background music until a mean streak finally disrupts its initial complacency on “Dream On.” The track is just another harmless trance spell, devoid of any nuance, until it finds its more sneering and sinister self and blissfully bullies through the remainder of its duration.

The most compositionally intriguing song on the album is “Linking People.” Its dramatic nature avoids becoming melodrama through Van Dyk’s impeccable timing and patience. A teasing peep-show of a track, it repeatedly reveals just a little sonic ecstasy before shrinking back on itself.

Van Dyk does return to the traditional changing tides of trance with “Linking People,” but these indulgences are set up well by intermittent fits of aggression. Politics avoids becoming the white noise of euphoria or melancholy repeated ad nauseum.

– Russel McMillan


Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

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