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GURU JOSH (Buy CDs by this artist)
Infinity (Deconstruction/RCA) 1990

Paul Walden was not the only former rock'n'roll musician to be converted by Britain's dance explosion of the late 1980s. He was, however, one of the first (after Adamski) to recognize the masses swaying to records at all-night raves as a potential audience. Arriving on stage — often uninvited — with portable keyboards and a sax player by the name of Mad Mick, the self-proclaimed Guru quickly became a fixture at such events, noted as much for his audacious behavior as his acid house melodies. With the track "Infinity," separated from other squiggly keyboard instrumentals by dint of its haunting saxophone melodies, he created a dance anthem and a massive hit single. But by the time he could deliver an album of the same name, the scene had slowed down, and the Guru's constant self-promotion had alienated much of his audience. Leaving aside the embarrassing live cover versions of "Louie Louie" and "Popcorn" — which suggest that the performance quality at raves was lower than the audience's drug-colored memories — Infinity is a high-quality electro-dance record, full of lush melodies and warm instrumentals.

[Tony Fletcher]