Tuesday, February 1, 2011


Song: "Paniek in de Confettiabriek"
Artist: Coole Piet
Search Term: "Sinterklaas" [This is from the soundtrack of a Dutch TV series called De Club van Sinterklaas]

Imagine a Disney Channel movie in which the members of a youth sports team, each with one stereotypical personality trait to his name (or her name, in the case of the sole girl on the team--whose personality trait, incidentally, is being a girl), learn the value of teamwork after they put aside their mutual antagonism and submit to an evening of team bonding at the sort of dancefloor-equipped pizza parlor that exists only in films where the main characters are too young to go clubbing. Now imagine that this scene of the kids merrily waving their hands in the air and bopping around on the dancefloor was already shot and edited to the tune of Arrow's "Hot Hot Hot," but a week before the movie was to be broadcast, it was discovered that there was a misunderstanding and the producers did not actually have permission to use "Hot Hot Hot" in the film.

The producers' clear course of action is to swap in this song from a Dutch kids' miniseries, whose title most likely translates to "We Cannot Afford 'Hot Hot Hot.'"

(It actually translates to "Panic in the Confetti Factory." I haven't bothered to locate and translate the lyrics, but let's assume it's a cautionary tale about the importance of thorough psychological screening when hiring employees for high-stress positions in the go-go world of confetti production.)

With a harmless house beat, chintzy synths, and a chorus that teeters on the line between catchy and punishingly irksome, "Paniek in de Confettiabriek" is really just a disposable children's product. I do appreciate the weirdly sinister hip-hop breakdown in the middle, which at least adds a contrasting flavor to the song's otherwise overbearing bounciness, but it's not enough to make this song any less forgettably dumb. My Dutch friend Anne, who has introduced me to a wealth of truly great music from the Netherlands, is sure to shake her head in a "Where have I gone wrong?" manner upon discovering I downloaded this thing.


  1. I like to think of myself as a person who lets people make their own mistakes :) I do have some more Dutch music to recommend to you, by the way - 'soap bubble box' by the Nits. it strikes the perfect middle between a rhythmically (is that a word?) interesting piano-piece and the sort of poppy song that would be the soundtrack in an arthouse-y feelgood movie (like 'In The City' or something). and it's about joseph cornell! check it out on youtube, yo.

  2. I love this song! It hits the precise midpoint between Neil Finn and Elton John! Thanks for the recommendation!