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19 Jul 2012

Elton John vs Pnau - who wins? by Stephan Heimbecher

I consider myself a middle age Elton John fan, because at 44 I am probably in dead center of the very wide range of Elton fans which go all the way from infants to music lovers of Elton's age (and beyond). Does that make me part of the target audience for the new album "Good Morning To The Night"? Yes, for the simple reason that I am a fan of Elton's musical work. And no, as I am not into dance music at all - I don't dance! 

But that didn't stop me from downloading the 14 track deluxe version of the album from iTunes - initiated, however, by a very sceptical click on the "Buy now" button. To my own surprise, I like most of the album tracks much more than I had anticipated. Because first of all technically I think it's a good production and a very interesting synthesis of various - mostly older - Elton John songs. The slaughter of Elton's original compositions, in my view, has been kept within acceptable boundaries, so that to me as a listener who is always open to new versions and covers of songs (not just those of Elton) this new approach is opening up a new perspective on very familar tunes. 

But it takes more than just a high level of technical skills, in this case audio mixing, to deliver a good end result. I think that the album once more proves how diverse, timeless, and persistent Elton's melodies can be, so that they maintain their freshness not just through a few decades of time, but also after being squeezed into a completely new musical genre. As a matter of fact, I don't think of "Good Morning To The Night" that much as a dance album, but much more as an easy listening Elton medley collection. 

I don't want to review every mix individually - I don't think it would make much sense. All I can say after a couple of listenings is that I am almost obsessed with the track "Karmatron".

What's interesting is that Elton is heading for his first No 1 album in 20 years in the UK with the Pnau collaboration. Elton said: “There’s been attempts to remix my music before but I’ve never been so excited by the result.” He's probably right about that.

A review by Stephan Heimbecher

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