Club Chipmunk – The Dance Mixes – Review

Club Chipmunk

The Dance Mixes (Chipmunk/Sony Wonder)
by Scott Hefflon

We had to special order this one. Evidently, the band formerly known as Alvin & the Chipmunks are not considered alternative music. If this isn’t alternative, what is? (I ask that hypothetically. I don’t want to know.) Somewhere amidst my Disney soundtracks, K-tel records, assorted George Carlin and Steve Martin albums, and all the other miscellaneous alternatives to everything I cart from apartment to apartment, there is an album called Chipmunk Punk. Too bad I can’t find it. The Chipmunks rival “Weird Al” Yankovic in their parody of current pop culture phenomena, and lose the crown of gimmickry only because it’s nigh-impossible to sit through repeated listenings. Without the versitility of a well-skilled band like “Weird Al”‘s, the Chipmunks’ charm is best appreciated in small doses over long periods of time. Such is the case with Club Chipmunk: The Dance Mixes – the novelty wears thin after the first few times through, but it’s a keeper. Dig this sucker out when you want your friends to groan, or when the party is getting downright silly.

The Dance Mixes draws inspiration (that’s a polite way to say, rips off material) from dance music both current and classic. From the omnipresent “Macarena” (included bonus is the Spanish version), to the few-year-old nostalgia kicks of “Vogue,” “I’m Too Sexy,” “Turn The Beat Around,” and “Love Shack,” to the disco-rama “Stayin’ Alive,” and “Play That Funky Music, Chipmunk,” to dancehall classics like “Witch Doctor,” and “Shout,” Club Chipmunk packs the house with good times. Staying true to the original flavor of the music (all quaint intros preserved in their original blushable beauty), yet remixing as per contemporary standards, The Dance Mixes is an album you’ll get a lot of mileage out of.