The album, Fan Fatal, is the fifth and final album of the Spanish new wave group, Alaska Y Dinarama. Normally, I would want to start from the beginning on bands like this because you can see a clear progression with their sound but I decided to review this album because it’s 1989 Week.
I have all of Alaska’s bands’ music from Ka Ka De Luxe to Fangoria. Some album get higher rotations than others, this album is low on my list. Not because it is bad; it just falls between the good albums and the great albums. It may have been released between them but it isn’t either of the two. Fan Fatal feels almost like a Frank-en-album, pieced together by different members that had different ideas. Maybe this is why it is the last album of the band. I don’t think they split on a high note.
Not wanting to sound like a Wikipedia page for the band, there are a lot of facts that go along with the music. And as a review website, I want to give insight to how the songs were put together and how it affects the album as a whole. First off, Nacho Canut (Bass) and Carlos Berlanga (Guitar) had side projects on top of Alaska Y Dinarama. They split their time between the bands while Dinarama was more popular. Because both guys were strong musicians there seemed to be a pissing contest when it came to how popular each other were, more on the side of Berlanga.
During the production of the album, opinions sided with Canut to use music created for his band for Fan Fatal. This was the first rift to come between Berlanga and the band. The song, “Mi Novio Es Un Zombie” (My Boyfriend Is A Zombie) became the first single. That song was taken from Canut’s band, Los Vegetales. The second track was “Quiero Ser Santa” (I want to be Santa). This was another song that was from another Canut project.
The album infuses pop and new wave with House and Hip-Hop in a way that is so subtle, you miss it. It doesn’t mean its not there. You have two very different ideas of music. One of which is moving forward with new sounds and ideas. The other is going backward to keep the group’s sound the same. Ultimately, you have an album that feels very mismatched. The band did not have a lot of success with Fan Fatal.
Now what I love and hate about Alaska Y Dinarama, as well as Fangoria (today) is how they release their albums. As a collector, this is killer. The original album release had 12-tracks while the cassette version had fourteen. CDs were barely coming out at the time so to get people to buy the new format, they release that version with seventeen tracks (though only 16 are listed). In 2006, they released a collectors edition which featured thirty songs. This version contained demos, B-sides, and remixes. For fans of the band, all the releases are killer on the wallet. They are who they are and it is why fans love them. It is about the music.