Why, oh, why am I doing this to myself again? Italian dance musician Floorfilla, also known as DJ Cerla on occasion, created what I consider to be one of the worst dance albums I've ever heard. But hey, we all make mistakes. Just look at me: I once ate half a Hot Pocket, thinking that it might actually be edible, only to dash immediately to the bathroom to give my porcelain bowl a gush of terrifying news. And people still give me a second chance in life, so why can't I do the same for poor Floorfilla (or "Poorfilla" for short)? A few years after his debut tragedy, he came back in 2003 with his sophomore effort, "Le Voyage". Let's just see what kind of voyage it actually is.
Things are already looking up because although that ridiculous cartoon drawing of some random child is still in Floorfilla's art, he's no longer holding up the middle finger on the front or back cover. Maybe he realized how ridiculous that is and opted to tone down his image a bit. I'm pleased when artists grow and mature because it shows a strong dedication to their craft and—no, wait, there's a giant cartoon middle finger on the disc itself. Leave it to me to speak too soon.
The party begins with Welcome Party People!, a fitting intro that welcomes me, the party person, with some silly special effects and the shouts of a crowd that was either recorded at one of DJ Cerla's spinning gigs or at a completely different event. We also get to hear the return of Floorfilla's resident MC, the wild-haired rantings of Momo B! Then we drift into Badboy, the track where our pal Momo chants "Am I wrong? Does anybody feeling me up?" ...w-wait a second... Let's just think about this for a second. "Does anybody feeling me up" makes no sense grammatically or logically. Momo, I believe you should be asking "Is anyone feeling me up?" Or, better yet, choose a better question. With his French roots, he may have actually been saying "Does anybody filling me up?", but I don't believe he should be getting filled up by others. The rest of the song is corny, too, but Cerla drops a little acid synth in there halfway through that is easily the most interesting thing Floorfilla's ever composed. Ever. EVER.
After hearing five of Floorfilla's anthems on his first album, it was only natural to anticipate another, and we get it with the aptly-named Anthem #6 (Cassez La Boîte). "La boîte" refers to a nightclub, so they're basically going to turn this mother out! (Thanks, MC Hammer, for that invigorating line.) Momo's back, but the focus on a slightly enchanting melody, first played with fake dream bells, then with a mildly out-of-tune synth that jams the melody down our throat with a bit of a bassline that would put a few subwoofers to the test. This one's the most catchy since Floorfilla's very first anthem (Anthem #1, if you're a math whiz) and actually isn't half bad, all things considered.
Kosmiklove offers a VERY vocoded female robot that seeks intergalactic relations. While the melody didn't blow my socks off into the next county, this song did give me a bit of pause. I think Floorfilla's been getting better at producing in his time off because these songs seem far more polished. Granted, the scent of potent cheese still lingers a bit, but it's not quite as strong as before. I'll give him credit. Same goes for Game Over, a song whose melody you may not immediately remember after a single listening, but you might remember the creepy repetitive voice that churns out one phrase: "I... am... game... over..." Then again, he may be a man with the unfortunate name of Game Over, short for Gameward Lester Over. I still believe he's putting a bit more thought into his melodies and hooks, though. They don't sound like they were copied from a Fisher-Price plastic telephone anymore.
What I didn't expect was a dance cover of a song by the folk rock band America called Sister Golden Hair. The only difference, aside from the genre shift, is that Floorfilla uses a vocoded female studio singer instead of Jackson Browne. Floorfilla also didn't hire a native English speaker, so she just does the best she can with "Seester Golden Hair". But this cover is bad, both in vocals and in uninspired woobly synths. I also didn't expect a French rap about all the different drugs you could take in Le Truc Bidon. I really didn't. Yikes. Ugh. But you have to love Momo B for giving us such great lyrics as the following:
One day I was walkin' the street with my brother,
With a spliff in his hand, you know what I mean,
I asked the brother "What's going on with your head?",
"Do you become a motherf***** basehead?" No, no, no, no...
I don't want you to become a motherf***** basehead!
Now imagine saying that but then squeezing your voice through autotune. It's just that hilariously awful. If the guy is looking for street credibility with his hard-hitting raps, he probably shouldn't be on a Floorfilla album.
Floorfilla Loves You is literally the sound of a bed creaking while a couple makes love, and a strange woman's voice says "Floorfilla loves you" over and over. It's 44 seconds of my life I'll never get back. But wait! I shouldn't have wasted my time on that, if Momo B is to be believed. In Time 2 Move, he clearly states that "If you've got time, don't waste your time, because it's time... you're moving up and down." Well, he's got my vote. After that, it's your typical run-of-the-mill hands-up track that sorrrrrrrta makes me want 2 move but not really. Maybe I could move to prepare myself a nacho plate.
And then I heard 6 Is Danger, and just as when I reviewed Floorfilla's previous album, I buried my face in my hands in disbelief. Check out THESE lyrics, as dictated by a robot woman: "Sex is not religious / Sex is painful / Sex is not polite / Sex is not religious / Sex is painful / Sex is not polite / Sex is dangerous / But I am still having sex". Repeat featuring a male voice. I think they use the same fake voice program that they used in all those old Benny Benassi songs. (They SAY they used real people, but real people don't sound like that.) The rest of the song is impressively monotonous, to the point where I think Floorfilla just wanted to make a song about sex and that's it. Too bad this barely qualifies as a song.
Next up is Mayday!, a popular shout from cruise ship passengers forced to listen to a Floorfilla megamix. This one combines Momo, the female vocoder machine, and a robot, all in one pretty standard dance track! There's nothing wrong with the song — the basic sub synth melody does its job — and you could probably get away with doing the mashed potato or some other fairly dry dance move to this tune. But while we're stuck in this Floorfilla delirium, let's enjoy Le Délire, one of the main singles from this album that's about as inspirational as a poster of a cat hanging from a clothesline with the subtitle "Hang in there, baby... or not, whatever." Le Délire has a melody that's as boring as watching grass turn brown, but the song still tries to pass as a real club-banger. Yes, it IS a banger. As in the sausage.
After the brief and pointless German interlude Was?, Eastern beats enter the room as we check out My Melody. I like the sound of the tabla in dance music, and this beat's simple but effective. I do have to ask, however, why the song is titled thus. Aren't ALL of these melodies yours, Floorfilla? Or am I discovering just now that all of these melodies are just stolen?! DJ Cerla, how could you? As for the song itself, it reminds me of what Pulsedriver used to sound like in his earlier days: fairly simple melody, plus a little bit of vocoded voice. Oh, and Momo B. You can't avoid that guy's shouts. He's the H.P. Baxxter of Italian music, it seems.
And it's not as apparent as here, as Momo even appears to rap in the semi-hardcore interlude track Osama Rave, which is only called that because of a cheesy Middle Eastern chant loop that they threw in for kicks... alongside the regular kicks. And we close out with a jazzy outro in the six-minute rap track, Floor-Fee-La. But this time, Momo gets another guy in there to also sing about smoking things in English, like marijuana and music. This is... goofy.
I'll say this: Floorfilla's skills at making music has definitely improved since United Beatz of Floorfilla in 2000. I'll also say this: he still can't keep many good melodies in my head, and he hasn't learned the value of NOT having vomit-inducing pointless interludes on his album. He hasn't put out another album since then, aside from a general repacking of Le Voyage called Re-Fill featuring extra remixes, a "Gigamix", and a DVD featuring all his music videos. His release schedule has also slowed considerably, having not really put out a proper Floorfilla tune since 2007. Had he kept honing his skills, he might have been able to still compete in the hands-up community, but as such, we'll just have to remember him as the guy who made "Floorfilla Loves You", the track about a creaky bed, sex groans, and creepy voices saying "Floorfilla loves you..." Thanks, man.