For You: Lorenzo Senni’s “Persona”
Persona nearly falls into the rave cliches that it is so determined to subvert, but I think the cheesiness of its sounds add to a soundscape that is honest in its simplicity. And really, it’s not nearly dance music: “Angel” utilizes dated 80s and 90s synths to imply dance music, yet it can easily be interpreted as concise ambient music. It has the capability to move people, yet demands nothing except engaged background listening.
Going back a track to “One Life, One Chance”, we find much more dance-like sounds, including a shrieking synth that desperately wishes to be the voice of Cyrus or Spears. But what is missing is the percussion, and what is missing is the build up. Instead we are left with the sinew and nerves of what could have been “electronic dance music”. There is a distinct deconstruction of the genre that deserves to be heard; it is an album that revels in what it is not; it is in love with dance but keeps it at an arm’s reach.
Perhaps I am overly influenced by the album cover, but Senni’s interpretation of “non-dance music” is in itself fetishistic: it revels in the delights of dance but just like someone who wishes to hold off the ecstasy of orgasm, it never quite gets there, where I and probably you believe it should be. Because arriving there would set it so far back, into something completely forgettable.