Posts tagged synthpop
Posts tagged synthpop
Cold Cave - “A Little Death To Laugh” (Heartworm Press 2012)
It took me a while to give into the hype of Cold Cave. I saw them in 2009 and was like, “wow this is lame.” That weekend I also saw some of the sickest and best noise bands ever, so I wasn’t in a synth-pop mood that day. The hype machine rolled on and they got huge. I’m gonna level with you, my readers; in my experience, about half of the time a band is super hyped up, they usually deserve the hype. Generally I’ll ignore said hype, but occasionally I’ll give in. Cold Cave certainly deserve all the praise they get. They know how to write a catchy as fuck synth-pop tune.
The three tracks on this single are further proof of Cold Cave’s genius. Like these songs are so simple, just vocals, drums, and a few synth tracks; but they are perfectly crafted. Instantly memorable, the titular track will be stuck with me for days. The second track is a synth pop song delivered at hardcore speed. I love it. The final track is an instrumental of spacious synth bells and sounds almost like a Talking Heads song.
This single is more proof to me that Cold Cave will be around for quite some time.
aTelecine - “The Falcon And The Pod” (Pendu Sound Recordings 2011)
Ok I’ll admit it. I caved. I didn’t want to, but I couldn’t resist it’s charm. I paid for the aTelecine subscription from Pendu Sound. I didn’t want to, as it was ridiculously over priced ($88 for 3 LPs, 7”, and a slipcase for everything? Come on!) but after I saw a copy of this record I had to. Look at how sexy this fucking this is!! The vinyl is grey but has just a twinge of green in it. Love at first sight. I just hope the rest of the records live up to the high standards this one has set.
Musically this record is very weird. It touches upon so many different elements over the course of two sides it’s kind of mind boggling. This record is like a mixture of 60’s experimental synth records, Throbbing Gristle, Bauhaus, late 80’s early 90’s dance records, Cabaret Voltaire, Aphex Twin, The Residents, the first Devo album, and like a million other things. Also the entire thing is fucking evil sounding. Like the kind of thing grandmas would hear their weirdo neighbors listening to and then telling everyone in their sewing circle her neighbors were summoning demons and/or worshipping Satan. Oh yeah Sasha Grey is in this band too.
This one has it all. Psychedelic keyboard freakouts, straight up dance jams, vintage synthesizers and drum machines, creepy vocals drowned in delay, and much much more. I do not regret for a second buying that subscription because I can’t fucking wait to get the rest of the set.
Dan Deacon - “Spiderman Of The Rings” (Wildfire Records 2007)
“Hey guys I like square waves and and catchy pop songs. I’m gonna make an album.”
PS: I’m pretty sure this dude went to the same college as me and was in the sister program to the program I took.
I bought a stupid amount of records today from Redscroll Records in Wallingford, CT as well as got some in the mail a few days ago.
LPs + 10”:
Crestfallen, Foo Fighters, From Ashes Rise, La Dispute, New Found Glory, The Black Hand, Wormrot, Clockcleaner, Dan Deacon, Kevin Drumm, Earth, Gauze, Haters/Lockweld split, Shaft OST, Heartless, King Dude, Masato Tanaka/Pocket Gallows split, The Pink Noise, Regulations, The Residents, This Is My Fist, Total Fury, Vegas, White Heterosexuals, Whitehouse, Xeno & Oaklander
Gary Numan - “Telekon” (Atco 1980)
This is the record that is the follow up to “Pleasure Principle” which I really love. That record is catchy and strange. This record is the logical, more progressive, darker counterpart to that album, and I don’t like it nearly as much as that album (though there are a few really solid tracks on here) despite that being the opposite of what a hip reviewer would say. Boo-urns.
Goldfrapp - “Head First” (Mute Corporation 2010)
Yes I am reviewing Goldfrapp. I fucking LOVE Goldfrapp. They manage to produce some of the fucking catchiest, fun music ever. Every one of their songs are instantly memorable synthpop gems. This album is no different. I could listen to them all day. Perfectly programed electronic drums provide solid beats for obviously obsessively worked out synth sounds that play simple and cathy melodies. Then the wispy sweet vocals tie everything together. I will never get sick of this album.
You know how college for most people is a time of discovering obscure new music you never would have known existed? For me when I entered the music conservatory for music production at SUNY Purchase I was already a tenured music snob; I started at that school when I was 23. I had years of digging through record bins and researching my favorite bands influences behind me. Since I was attending college for music production I thought everyone would have obscure and weird taste like myself…how wrong I was. Most people don’t actually enjoy horribly recorded black metal and noise (get off the internet and go out into the real world and you will see if you don’t believe me…in fact most normal people don’t care about music that much). Most of my fellow students were way into singer/songwriter bullshit, perhaps the only genre of music I hate. HATE.
Anyway, attending school in a conservatory opened my eyes to mainstream styles of music more than anything. Not everything had to be near unlistenable walls of fuzz with screaming (though somedays I have trouble remembering this). Goldfrapp is probably my favorite discovery from this time. One of my music theory professors had a way of teaching us theory with cool music instead of boring classical stuff (not that I don’t enjoy classical music), and one day he played us Goldfrapp. My love affair started then. I can also remember a day when he play us Portishead and while analyzing it I was nearly in tears because everything came full circle and I began getting the theory behind music and the song is so beautiful (“Roads” off the Dummy album). Around this time I also found out about stuff like old delta blues and swing-era jazz, which satisfied my hunger for lo-fi recordings that weren’t japanese hardcore. I also bought some of my first non-GG Allin country albums while in school.
Sorry this wasn’t much of a review but a trip down memory lane. Actually I’m not sorry, this is my blog and I’ll do what I like.
The Pitchshifters - self titled (Meeuw Muzak 2007)
Here is an interesting little record I happened upon recently, it’s a self titled 7” from The Pitchshifters. Not to be confused with Pitchshifter (which I did, that’s how I ended up owning this record, thinking it was them I picked up the 7” because I’ve never heard them before) it’s a nifty little electronic/synth pop instrumental platter. I couldn’t figure out if it should be played at 33 or 45, though both speeds sound like they work, though 45 sounded cooler. The 7” is two untitled little ditties with a minimal analog synth melody and archaic drum machine beat. They are both fun catchy tunes, that are over as soon as they begin. There is no info or contact listed anywhere in the sleeve and I couldn’t find any info on these guys throughout the vast internet, but I believe they are Japanese, and their only other releases are two CDrs (according to discogs) that I’ll never get copies of. I would love to by the way, because this record is fun and waaay to short.
I’m taking a break from phase one (working recent stuff into the complete collection) of my LP reorganizing to post this. Let me get back to that.
PS I’ve still never heard Pitchshifter.