weekend players
Name of Album: pursuit of happiness
Ratings: Personal - 5 General - 5
Release Date: August 2002


Weekend Players's debut album, Pursuit of Happiness consists of two players to be exact: singer Rachel Foster and producer Andy Cato, the latter better known for his work as part of Groove Armada. The duo's inaugural work together is impressive. Their debut single 21st Century is quite prescient to what is in store on the rest of the album, and dance music fans will be impressed.

21st Century's The rhythmic lashing inspires a whirling dervish whose centrifugal force whisks the weight of everyday concerns off the ground, a sound which reminds you of the adolescent dances alone in your bedroom, or brighter days and lithe nights. A time when all you had to care or worry or wonder about was yourself.

Rachel Foster's voice is a sweet bland of Sade and Joni Mitchell, which is most evident in the spiritual Angel and the sprite tale of Icarus on earth, (Walking) Into the Sun.

I must of have been in a good mood because I seemed to like everything (I qualify my appreciation for I still am incredulous); even the one song that bordered on trite for reasons inconnu, I cannot explain. Still, The Best Days of Our Lives resounded poetically, reminiscent of the stilted cadence of a David Mamet dialogue, all of which never has appealed to me, but somehow the synthesized seagulls and the programmed lulls with simple words to satisfy the waiting—cumulatively proved worthy of my cynical patience and lured attention.

And although much hype is made over other tracks (and rightfully so) my favorite is the title track, Pursuit of Happiness. The result is a funky and uplifting Sade (is that possible?), a lyrical treatise on optimism that doesn't make you want to sulk or take off your clothes.

Sometimes artists will try to embody variety in an experiment of versatility and make muck for their trouble. Other times they find a groove and slip and slide to-and-fro playfully in the concave of their serendipity, with results which are resplendent pleasure to the ear. This is exactly what we have here. A Picasso in blue, Warhol and his Campbell cans and a Marilyn—The Weekend Players have produced an oeuvre of interlacing audio poetry.

In sum, albeit, the same voice is on every song, The Weekend Players still offer a veritable variety if electronic chanson. As with both of Groove Armada's productions I'm compelled to give Weekend Players five stars. A definite must-buy, especially if your in pursuit of happiness.