Dear goodness. Just when you think you've heard it all, in walks Scooter after many moons of fans everywhere wondering to where their music had disappeared in 2004 with a brand new single. But it wasn't just a new song. It was a new sound. It was a completely different sound than Scooter fans had been used to. Oh, sure, over time, they had reinvented themselves from a happy hardcore band wearing backwards caps to a stadium techno megagroup with more chains around the neck than ever before. But nobody expected the arrival of... DISCO!
That's right: disco is back, courtesy of the German trio from their Hamburg studio and their 2004 single, "Shake That!" And, boy, was it ever a polarizing decision to pop this into the market. Still, it was a Top 10 hit, so there must have been wisdom in their selection. From the opening strums of the Radio Version, you know something's going to be different here. And then that bouncy motown bass hits and frontman H.P. Baxxter begins his rapping madness, a little slower than usual but still at a good pace. The chorus has been lifted from "(Shake, Shake, Shake) Shake Your Booty", that legendary disco track that made chart headlines when it was features as part of the "Saturday Night Fever" movie soundtrack. It doesn't sound half bad here amongst the groovy bassline and the bubbly trumpets. All the elements of a funky house track seem to ease together like a jigsaw puzzle, and in the end, it's a pretty club-friendly track that could create mass dance synchronization on dancefloors all over the place. The Extended Mix is indeed an extended version of the radio edit (the full version, perhaps) and features some additional intro and outro beats, alongside a few unique disco guitar riffs. Meanwhile, the Clubmix is the Extended Mix sans H.P. lyrics, plus the bass is much fatter. It's definitely an asset if you don't like H.P.'s nonsensical but nonetheless uplifting shouts.
As well, a remix was provided by German dance producer CJ Stone. It's pretty standard dance music fare, offering some pretty common reverbed synths, though later on, an original hard dance melody was included to shuffle things up a bit and rely less on the "Shake Your Booty" sound byte. And, as was typical of the time, a B-Side was also added. The uniquely-titled Suffix (which, consequently, appears at the end of the CD-single...) is a mellow trance piece, performed with heavy tranquility and no overwhelming stadium beats. Floating pads and a subtle melody haunt the entire piece, giving the listener a sensation of sitting on top of a mountain. A somewhat odd ending for a single that began with disco music. Very simple, very calming, and very much worth a listen.
"Shake That!" is very strange territory for Scooter — disco house wasn't exactly their forte — but it was a successful experiment, even if not every Scooter fan was immediately thrilled by the result. Still, it's a song for curious ears, so go ahead and take a peek if you ever wondered what would happen if disco ever really came back...