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- 83 by IKO
8/10 Clinton Staff review, 14 November 2014
Each of us have different ears. Brian simply could not cope with the monotone vocals on this minimal synth re-issue from 1982 yet they don’t bother me, it all adds to the sense of post Kraftwerk unease I suppose. Perhaps the voice reminds him of Phil, a man whose voice is so monotone he is not allowed on radio or television broadcasts.
Anyway regardless of whether you can cope with the vocals or not , this is a rare find indeed - an album from the dim and distant past that surely does deserve the re-issue treatment. Yes the vocals date it but a cursory listen would probably leave you with the impression that this was some modern day synth troupe faithfully reproducing the past. Several tracks are superb examples of the kind of science fiction synth-pop that was bubbling under the surface in the early 80’s. The nearest comparison musically i guess is the early Human League with their ‘no guitar’ rule and futuristic bleeps and bloops. Instead of Oakey’s baritone you get a kind of Germanic spoken word uttering all kinds of robotic nonsense ‘ooo’s on de other side of that door?’ they plead on ‘Elevator’ meanwhile the rich synth melodies of ‘Computer Love’ era Kraftwerk will appeal to synth aficionados young and old.
There are a few comical but severely dated tracks but then you get something like ‘Digital Delight’ which sorta invents techno. Great stuff.
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