Rinder & Lewis: Seven Deadly Sins (Hot Shot/Cherry Red)

Rinder & Lewis
Seven Deadly Sins
Hot Shot/Cherry Red

The disco production team of Laurin Rinder and Michael Lewis are responsible for one of the prophetic albums of the disco era, 1978’s Seven Deadly Sins. The duo would work together on numerous anonymous studio disco groups, releasing a handful of albums under a number of monikers, most notably El Coco, who racked up numerous disco hits over a seven year period. It’s Seven Deadly Sins, however, for which the duo remains prevalent in the dance music history books.

As the title suggests, this album is a conceptual piece, with each song titled after one of the deadly sins, and though much could be written about each sin, the album is instrumental, save for “Envy (Animal Fire).” Conceptually, it may seem weak, but it’s the grooves that make it an important record. While numbers like “Sloth and “Covetousness” are your standard disco fare, one should listen closely to others. “Lust” and “Anger” contain a percussion rhythm and an overall melody that would come into prominence as House music, while “Gluttony” is pure industrial/techno, the sound of Wax!Trax being borne. The single, “Envy,” is a weird but fun little number, with oblique lyrics over a fun, jaunty beat.

Seven Deadly Sins might not proven to be a commercially successful album, but the quality of its grooves and the innovative nature of Rinder and Lewis’ melodies assure it a place in the history of dance music, and make it a nice little rarity to experience.

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