'Into Memory' is artist Mark Rowley’s debut album under the pseudonym Component#4. Building on the sharp, economical electronic rhythms of his 2012 EP release on Wayside and Woodland records ‘Barbed Wire Sunday’. ‘Into Memory’ is a collection of songs inspired by Rowley’s childhood in the post-industrial, socially deprived West Midlands of the 1980’s. Each of the atmospheric pop songs paints a landscape of different aspects of the artists environment or an experience encountered during this period and is as much a historical document as it is a stunningly crafted work of musical composition.
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Imagine if Stephin Merritt was English, had stood at bus stops in the rain for the last 20 years, was extremely depressed and worshipped early ‘80’s synth pop and you'll get close to the sound on this latest release on Wayside and Woodland (Epic 45 etc).
On opener ‘Back 2 Basics’ Mike Rowley sounds as low as a man can get. It sounds like the sort of thing pale and serious young men made in the early ‘80’s gloom. ‘Tyler’ is based around a farting Numan-eque riff - its harshness doesn’t prepare you for ‘Before She Left’ which has smooth '80’s chord changes and is written from the perspective of an angry dad. It’s the old caustic lyrics/sweet music thing and is reminiscent of some Famous Boyfriend stuff…..and you could say there’s bits of Field Mice in the melodies. ‘The Call Centre’ perfectly sums up Component no 4’s aesthetic. This is as bleak a description of life in modern day Britain as anything Sleaford Mods have come up with but whereas the ’Mods channel it through punk-ish anger, Component no 4 sounds like Neil Tennant who, having failed to get his big break at Smash Hits, was resigned to a life trudging back and forward to work in a soul less office.
Monochrome bleak electronic pop perfect to soundtrack another four years of Tory rule.
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- Into Memory by Component#4
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