Fatboy Slim’s latest big project was a coordinated, single night, worldwide, 800 cinema screening of his Big Beach Bootique, and to complement this event, he has released a CD/DVD package. But I have long believed that the heights that Fatboy Slim achieved during the late nineties/early 2000s is long gone, and any subsequent releases that he has had just further strengthens this sentiment. ‘Big Beach Bootique 5’ is no different.
The mix starts off on a nostalgic tip, with Fatboy Slim reliving two of his biggest hits, Right Here Right Now and Praise You, with the appreciative crowd audibly singing along. More familiar snippets, like Put Your Hands Up, and Where’s Your Head continue to tug at nostalgic heartstrings, giving you a nice feel-good buzz. But this is short lived, as the mix descends into mediocrity, with uninspired tracks like Nari & Milani vs Maurizio Gubellini’s Up; Tocadisco’s That Miami Track; Bart B More’s Traction; and Lazy Jay’s Reflux. Even the reintroduction of Fatboy Slim tracks like Star 69, Sunset (Bird of Prey) fail to re-energise the mix; and ironically, Praise You, the track that set the mix into good stead, concluded the mix with such absurdity thanks to an incredibly disjointed, truly awful remix.
The DVD doesn’t salvage the wreck of the CD, instead makes you ask yourself: why would you consider clichéd festival footage with a stagnant soundtrack be some sort of a grand spectacle?
Enough is enough already. Yes, Fatboy Slim has had a stellar career; yes, he was responsible for massive dance anthems; and yes, he had some of the most jaw‑dropping live sets ever seen; but those were all in the past tense. As dance music continues to develop and evolve into bigger and bolder things, Fatboy Slim is struggling to keep up, just barely treading water. It is only a matter of time before he sinks into the depths of dance music folklore.
Fatboy Slim: Big Beach Bootique is out now through Southern Fried.