Rhythm & Views

Men, Women and Children

When the Long Island hard-core band Glassjaw broke up, guitarist Todd Weinstock followed his muse in a most unlikely direction: He formed the new-wavey disco group Men, Women and Children.

The band's recent debut CD is a decadent and convincing exercise in rock music for dancing--post-ironic songs filled with irresistible disco rhythms, shouted gang vocals, funky bass popping and synthesizers that wiggle and jitter in a fashion not unlike that of Prince's influential '80s sound.

The mission is clear from the first track, the party-all-night first single, "Dance in My Blood," which posits: "You don't need a reason / to get out on the dance floor."

The emphasis on guitar is a telling point. The album starts out with a screeching guitar assault that might not be out of place in a metal album, then shifts into a dance groove. But throughout the recording, the guitars define the musical landscape with licks that shower down on the listener, ricocheting and boomeranging inside your head.

Some listeners immediately will try to compare Men, Women and Children to other such contemporary acts as Scissor Sisters, LCD Soundsystem or Goldfrapp, but these guys've been listening longer and deeper than that. The big beats of Duran Duran, ABC, Frankie Goes to Hollywood, Chic and acid house music dominate.

Slick? Sure. But as dance music, it's undeniably fun and sexy as hell.

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