Arguably the first big blogstar, Annie burst onto the scene in 2004 with her sugary-as-hell single "Heartbeat." After a few visits to the dentist and some minor surgery, I've finally recovered from that song and the remainder of her debut, Anniemal, though the title still gives me sharp, shooting pains. Now !K7, continuing its recent trend of picking established names to head its flagship mix series, has given the pop-star/deejay the chance to show off a little of her taste outside her own genre. The result is surprisingly diverse, if somewhat forgettable.
To its credit, there are very few poorly chosen tracks over the course of the mix. She plays to her fun image, using a few great remixes of big indie names such as Le Tigre (remixed by Junior Senior) and Death From Above 1979, some cheesy dance pop from Bumblebee Unlimited and Bow Wow Wow ("I Want Candy," probably the last song I ever expected to see show up on a DJ Kicks), and even an old-school hip-hop track from Gucci Crew. Despite these mostly solid choices, most of the time the mix seems like something you would love to hear when you scan the dial to the pop station in your local market rather than something you would actually put on to enjoy.
Annie is a little like that - the Kylie Minogue for people who are afraid to like Kylie Minogue. I don't care what anyone says about her "subversive" lyrics or "post-playful" persona. Both this mix and Anniemal place her further away from her predecessors. Her unabashed pop-ness eliminates any chance for her to cross over into becoming actually pop, which is required to have an attitude about itself. And although none of her mixing is anything to write home about, I doubt there are many people who will be looking for those skills on their newly purchased Annie CD. Maybe the amateurish proceedings show she is that much less like Madonna and Kylie, who probably would have hired a professional deejay to do their dirty work. So rejoice, Annie fans. The rest of us will make appointments for the dentist.
Audio samples: http://www.k7.com/data.pl?release=!K7190CD
Annie on !K7's Web site: http://www.k7.com/annie/
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