Boot & Tax Boot & Tax
The Italian duo serves up a set of analog jams for Optimo Music
When one goes out to seek the fruits that Optimo bears, they usually returns with a cornucopia of weird, everlasting musical mangoes that just never go bad—no matter what shape or shade comes with, it will bear something satisfying beneath the surface. So when the pair signed the likes of Italian analog twosome Cristian Croce and Claudio Brioschi (together known as Boot & Tax) to Optimo Music, the likelihood was that things were going to get wonderfully weird. After two twelves by the dynamic duo, Boot & Tax readied their eponymous debut LP, and after absorbing their last two releases, it’s about what you’d expect it to be—off-center analog raspberry jams. And that’s not a bad thing at all.
Crafting an album that eschews the concept of genre classification entirely, Boot & Tax enter worlds of Afrobeat (“Good Fela”) and flow into something like Ennio Morricone making a dance track (“Sound Of Baloo”) with simultaneous levity and tact. But it’s when the thumping kick and guitar licks of “Red Guitar” come in where Boot & Tax takes off and shows their true intentions—it’s a fun, disco-tinged jukebox classic waiting to be heralded by its masses. Between vocals from Croce that are simple in their premise, and Brioschi strumming away that guitar between bass drums and claps, it won’t be hard to dance along to the rhythm with a smile. Tracks like “Sazarda Gente” and “Father & Son, among the albums other standouts, follow similar templates, embracing a churning, charming take on dance music.
The less-than-standout tunes are among the album’s more straightforward club cuts. Tracks like “Dancin” and “Apnea”,might be impressive sounding tools for the dancefloor, but they stick out like a sore thumb in the midst of the impressive productions surrounding them; perhaps fluctuating between concise, four-to-the-floor tracks and kitschy, rhythmic jam sessions wasn’t the most cohesive way to build the album. However, the record still provides great all-around production, smokey, synth-laden fun and some spaghetti-western twang, all within a 58-minute run time. One thing’s for sure, though—if Optimo continues putting out stuff like this on their label, we won’t have a classification for dance music anymore. At least we’ll still have mangoes.