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LABEL: Club Tools RELEASE DATE: December 1, 1999 GENRE: Hard House
// review by Jeff

We need to do WHAT to the millennium?

Let's take a quick time-traveling adventure back to 1999. The biggest phenomenon back then was that malicious Y2K scare. Everyone was worried that all the computers in the world would fail because they could not compute the year "2000" and revert back to "1900", causing massive power failures and errors all over the world, thus leading to a state of total disarray everywhere. After a global revamping of most computer systems (at a rather hefty cost), the year 2000 rolled around and relative little happened. So was it worth all the anxiety that people had amassed toward the situation, or was it all just a bunch of malarky? Well, it didn't really matter to the three men of Scooter -- H.P. Baxxter, Rick J. Jordan, and Axel Coon -- because they had three words for the whole situation: "Fuck the millennium!"

Based upon a phrase put forth a couple of years earlier by 2K (composed of the two former members of stadium techno pioneer group The KLF), the track "Fuck The Millennium" had originally appeared on their album "Back To The Heavyweight Jam" released months earlier. However, the album version was dreadful; it was boring and lacked any melody or power whatsoever. It was basically a dry beat and bassline with frontman H.P. Baxxter saying random things (and later telling the crowd to fuck off). Of all the tracks they could have chosen to become their next single, this one was among the least likely. It simply felt it had no potential whatsoever. Well, Scooter has a tendency to surprise us on occasion, and this is one of those times. They completely revamped the song and made it a wild party track! The song is now "rough and tough and dangerous", as H.P. has been quoted as saying many times.

The Radio Edit first has H.P. applying more pseudonyms to himself than he can probably remember ("Dave from Sheffield", "Candyman", etc.). After some more H.P. shouts over some tough beats, a dark synth underlines his message that he wants to fuck the millennium, after which a squelchy siren-style sound overtakes the tune. Then something odd happens: they quickly switch over to a plucky rendition of "Wheels", first performed by an instrumental group from the 1960s known as The String-A-Longs. It was unexpected, but for some reason, it's very cheerful and it works. Don't ask me how; it simply does, and it carries the tense energy of the track along. Then we revert back to the darker sound for a while, then the lighter atmosphere of "Wheels" for a second go. At the end, we hear a shouting crowd as H.P. cryptically informs us that "Gothic... doesn't... exist..." That's great. Overall, it's a song that you could definitely jump and/or rock out to and certainly one that even non-Scooter fans could enjoy! The Extended Mix is also featured here, but is quite similar with only a longer build-up to distinguish it from the Radio Edit. The B-Side here, New Year's Day, consist more of a pasting together of elements from "Fuck The Millennium"; however, it is much more ominous, especially with its full-on siren at the beginning. It also lacks the melody from "Wheels", as well as any vocals. If you seek a slightly darker presence for a party you're throwing, this one may be for you. I like this B-Side, though it doesn't exactly deliver anything particularly fresh out there that we didn't really hear in the title track, aside from perhaps a slightly bumpier bassline.

"Fuck The Millennium" seems to just be one of those tunes that you can't figure out why you like it, but you just do. There is simply an aura about it that not only screams the energy of Scooter, but also the release of the mania that surrounded Y2K. From what I've heard in the past, it was one of the most played tunes in Europe at parties on New Year's Eve of 1999, and with good reason! The world's energy level must be kept high, especially in times of presumedly imminent doom (even when that impending doom is not actually coming)! I will recommend this single to the masses, though not to those people who could be offended by salty language (read: keep the children away from this one!).


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