12 September 2008

BodyJam 46 Review

Here's a teasing, non-spoiler review of BodyJam 46 for all you junkies out there waiting for your gym's launch.

First of all, check out the new release posters! The guy in the BodyJam poster is none other than Arnold Warren, my Jam trainer. Undoubtedly I couldn't recognize him very much because of the severe Photoshop-ing that picture went through but yes, it's him.

When I first listened to the warmup music without seeing the choreography, I was a little discouraged. It was such a mellow sound to start a Jam class with! It did not have the instant kick like New Day from 44 or Boogie 2Nite from 42. But all is forgiven when I saw the masterclass video. The armline is super simple but looks really cool and fits the music very well. Again, I'm amazed by Gandalf's musicality in choreographing Jam tracks.

The isolations track fares much better with the fun and simple chorus combo. It is not as hard hitting as the music would suggest but the combo is interesting.

The Latin track is ok-lahhh. I'm not gushing over it yet. It feels like a mutant child of 41's La Bomba. Except much faster and with less hip wiggling! When the thing goes into double-time, new people will find themselves stomping all over the place and not really feeling the Latin furore as what Gandalf promised. Could be better...

The Tribal Explosion block is great! I like the fusion of different music and experimental moves that are a little contemporary-like. The key is to let the beat help you, and to stop thinking about technique and just melt into some of the moves. Great musicality movements here too!

Recovery follows that and just like Latin, it's not really impressing me. If you don't know how to snap your fingers, this release will teach you as there's schnapping in almost every track including a tonne of them in this recovery! The Elvis twist is inspired, the rest not so. Maybe it has something to do with all those urban hip hop tracks. I can't figure out what he's singing/rapping, so I can't really feel the theme of the music. And you know-lah, most hip-hop/rap has the same aggressive beat behind them.

The final Big Phat Aussie House block is my favourite. I'm a sucker for arm lines and there's plenty in this block to keep me happy. The first 8 counts are the hardest but once you get past that just groove into the house music and release your inhibitions! Don't even get me started on the last track - I feel like flying everytime she says "I need a miracle"! Oh, don't we all?

The groove down is rock inspired and you get to be a rockstar for a few minutes. I appreciate a different feel every now and then and this is definitely something different, though I find the music so-so.

I would say it's a solid release, but pales to 45 by just a little bit. I'm saying this even though I've done 45 so many times until it has the faint sour smell of stale garbage. The highlights for me is the Tribal Explosion and Aussie House block, which is already 70% of the release, so I would say a good job to the LM team!

So that's BodyJam 46, where everybody can get their kicks! Launching soon at a Les Mills-licensed facility!

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