TATU - BEYOND THE HYPE

ALL THE THINGS YOU WANT TO KNOW IN SPITE OF YOURSELF

the second album


In October 2005, two years after the release of "200 km/h in the wrong lane", the second album "Dangerous And Moving" was finally released.

The exploitative angle is gone: Yulia and Lena are adults now, they have shed their lesbian schoolgirl image and one of them has even become a mother. I can't remember another shock rock act which imploded with such a dull thud. Heck, even Frankie Goes To Hollywood put up more of a show.

Suddenly, three years after everybody has stopped caring, Tatu are back with a second album. I borrowed it from a friend and sat down to hear whether it warrants purchase. In short: It doesn't.

"Dangerous And Moving": album review

The first single, "All About Us", feels like a reject from Tatu's first album. It's certainly not a triumphant return to form, no music for the ages. Most of the songs on the new album put a lot of emphasis on guitars -- both electronic and acoustic. That may be appropriate for a rock group, but this is a duo of Russian girls who gained prominence by kissing each other on stage wearing kneepads. Electro-Pop was much more appropriate than soft rock.

The duo's command of English phonetics has improved considerably. However, if a reviewer feels the need to point out the singer's pronounciation, he is grasping at straws to write something nice about the album at all.

Most of the time, the music merely slouches along, recycling tired pop and rock cliches without the spark that ignited "200 km/h". They also reproduce some of the ambience of the first album, but again everything sounds a bit tired. "Sacrifice" reproduces the high-pitched desperation from "They're Not Gonna Get Us", again without adding anything.

There is a fair number of ballads. These songs are standard MOR stuff, filler material. They don't hurt the ears, but there's nothing remarkable about them. Most of it could have been sung by anyone. A few melodies show off singing skills, but at this point I'm beyond caring which one is able to do the hard work.

One of the songs on the album remains untranslated, "Obizyanka Nol", and it's funny: It stands out just because of the language. When they sing in Russian, the novelty factor keeps interest afloat, even though barely.

If it had been released a year after the debut, this would have been considered the "difficult second album" which every artist should be allowed to go through. Coming three years after 200 km/h, it sounds like a half-hearted attempt to get a bit more money from the few faithful fans that remain.

Even though of course nobody will believe this, I really got interested in Tatu because of the music. Three years later, "All The Things She Said" merely plods along. However, "Not Gonna Get Us" remains fun and "Show Me Love" is a great pop song. Hopefully, the returns from this boring second album will discourage them from a follow-up. Or the critical apathy might encourage them to outdo themselves next time -- according to an article, their record contract demands three more albums. I, for one, have lost any interest.

Right now, all that remains from Tatu are two good songs, a few outdated pages on www.HellOnEarth.com, numerous abandoned fansites and a few die-hards who can't rest until they own the new album in all it's incarnations. There are both deluxe and standard editions, two Japanese releases with bonus tracks as well as a Russian-language edition, of course... Ah, capitalism.

> about the different versions of "Dangerous And Moving"

what others say

"Least Essential Album of 2005"

The Onion's AV Club included "Dangerous And Moving" in their list of Inessential Albums of 2005 -- and it made the top of their list... or rather, the bottom.

From the shortish review:

"What's less essential than a pre-packaged Russian pop act with a lipstick-lesbian shtick? A pre-packaged Russian pop act that's dropped the lipstick-lesbian shtick."

... "It's 2005, and we -- the listening public -- have somewhere else to be."

latest changes

06/01/22: second album reviewed

what did they do?
yulia in the studio

So what did Yulia Volkova and Lena Katina do in the two years between the two albums?

In late 2003, a Tatu anime film was announced. Nothing ever came of it.

Tatu participated in the 2003 Eurovision Song Contest where they insulted other contestants. They came in third.

Early in 2004, Tatu split from their manager Ivan Shapovalov. In an interview, they claimed he was "scandal crazy". No kidding.

In the spring of 2004, Yulia admitted she was pregnant. The alleged father was her then-boyfriend Pavel Sidorov.

On September 23, 2004, Yulia Volkova gave birth to her first daughter Viktoria and split up with her boyfriend in early 2005.

Lena Katina also seems to have a boyfriend now...

album versions

There are at least five versions of the second Tatu album.

The Russian release is called "Lyudi-Invalidi" (Handicapped People) and has only eleven tracks. It was released in October of 2005.

The International release is called "Dangerous And Moving". It was released in October 2005.

There are at least four variants of the International album:

  • US version (no bonus tracks)
  • French/German version (one bonus track)
  • UK version (two bonus tracks)
  • Japanese version (three bonus tracks)

There are also limited editions available in some territories. These include a Video DVD with the music video of the first single "All about us".

> track details about the second album

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