Last Night

Club drugs and rock stars abide by the same rule: Whatgoes up must come down. After hitting a massive high on 1999's Play,Moby stopped making dance music, opting instead for the downtempoatmospherics of 2002's 18 and the strummed guitars of 2005's Hotel. Soit's exciting to hear this forty-two-year-old vegan blogger return toform. A concept album about an all-night bender, Last Night solidifiesMoby's link in the chain that binds DJ pioneers like Todd Terry toslinky futurists like Justice. From the space-age-Abba shimmer of "OohYeah" to the itchy funk of the brilliant Nineties house throwback "DiscoLies," Moby goes for groove over texture, relying on high-hats, pianoand strings while wisely staying off the mike. The album is billed as alove letter to New York nightlife, but tracks like the dance-hop "I Loveto Move in Here" (featuring Grandmaster Caz) feel more like an Irishwake for the era before the city's megaclubs were shuttered.Appropriately, Last Night's only drawback is the harsh slowdown of thetrancelike "Degenerates." After so many body-rocking tunes, it's likeany sobering slap: a real downer.