audio review : Blood On The Dance Floor [ History In The Mix ] ( album ) … Michael Jackson

audio review : Blood On The Dance Floor [ History In The Mix ] ( album ) ... Michael Jackson

This album has two titles because it is essentially two sets of songs, two EPs, combined into one.

Blood On The Dance Floor consists of five songs that are new not in the sense of being recent creations; it’s obvious from the start that, despite Sony’s deceptive promotion, the title track is a relic from the Dangerous era; but in the sense that they’ve never been released. They’re new to us, in other words, and, with the exception of the aforementioned title track, they sound awesome. Dare I say, with no hesitation, that three of the five; Morphine, Ghosts and Is It Scary; rank among Michael Jackson’s very best. He sounds irritated, even manic, on these songs; the kid who once sang ABC is now screaming drugs, sex and murder; but the rhythms are riveting. The melodies? Magical.

In The Mix, which remixes selections from the History album for both club and radio play, is a lot less interesting. There are standouts. At least one of these new mixes, namely the Classic Frankie Knuckles rendition of You Are Not Alone, might even be better than the original. My favorite part is the singing we couldn’t hear because it faded-out on the original. “Got to stop living alone,” Michael repeats over organs and joyous synth sounds, but on the whole, this set, much like his skin, pales in comparison to what came before it. David Morales ruins This Time Around. Hani’s Earth Song omits the entire choir section. They Don’t Care About Us, the best song on History, gets lost in the mix.

my rating : 4 of 5

1997

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