tempobet yeni adresi
like this cd review

16/04/2017 : PARRALOX - Subculture

PARRALOX

Subculture

MusicCD
PopSynth Pop / Electro Pop

[75/100]   

Conzoom
16/04/2017, Charles “Chuck” MOORHOUSE

Aeronaut this is not. Moving farther from the comparisons to the likes of Depeche Mode, Anything Box and Human League and closer to traditional disco, like Gloria Gaynor and Thelma Houston (which can be a good thing, a la Bronski Beat) comes Parralox with their latest release, Subculture. If you are looking for some pep in your step in lieu of the usual stomp in your stride; or if your cup of tea includes heaping tablespoons of artificial sweetener, this dripping sweet and soulfully upbeat release could be for you. I would skip the sweet stuff up front and start halfway through, after the album has begun its transition towards more of an ode to the synthpop pioneers of the 80s. Subculture starts more like mainstream-culture when “Paradise" unabashedly opens like the backing track to a caribbean cruise line commercial - fade to leather-faced South Floridians sipping mimosas from gold-rimmed goblets, strolling across sun-drenched marble floors past faux palm trees and slot machines. Then "Electric Nights" comes dancing right out of the Birdcage before "Key to Heaven" taps into Madonna’s lost 45s. "Give Back My Love" initially hits a little harder, giving rise to an expectation of something a little more substantial and less vanilla, before the pastel vocals wash that hope away and carry you down stream to a tacky modern art exhibition filled with pretentious poseurs - this time sipping manhattans under a filtered blue light.

That said, "Change of Heart" stands out and marks the starting point for the transition away from the sands of South Beach. While still poppy, very poppy, it’s melody soars above a relentlessly driving beat that powers through each synth breakdown and across each of the many bridges. The tale of two sides emerge further with "A Question of Love." It is reminiscent of an LP age when it was not uncommon for Side A to carry a much different attitude than Side B. It’s slower, groovier and decidedly less shiny-bright than the first half of the album. A nice duet between Louis Love and main man, John von Ahlen, who sounds like he’s channelling his best Dave Gahan, helps carry this track. Their voices merge quite nicely and starkly resonate on the solo portions. This song even has a nice “80s horn solo”-esque interlude. Industrial samples on Pressure Point and less optimistic, party influenced lyrics continue the real-life aspect of the latter half of this release. Overdrive, another duet, is a synthpop song that encourages us to “find the things that you like, … make it real, the change in your life, then your soul will be revealing.” It’s a pure saccharine, two-dimensional sound with banal lyrics. “Feel the magic, never tragic. Feel the passion. It’s a fashion.” The tragedy is the falsetto that follows. The chanting intro to "Last Year at Marienbad" despite the deeper tone of male vocals - like a throw back to Human League's call and response (think “… until the sun went down … “) gets us back onto our milquetoast disco excursion that started us off.

Here, I took a detour myself to pull out the Human League, ABC, Heaven 17 and OMD CDs from the trunk. I wanted to cleanse the palate to see if, perhaps, I wasn’t giving Subculture enough benefit of the doubt. Returning to "Voyager II" I indeed heard a more space-aged, textured, less voyeuristic, more subtle approach that did remind me more of its forebears (maybe owing to using Human League’s synths and bass player). Steady synths and a steady baseline make the new sound old again, in a good way. "Rocket Science" kept that vibe going - a soundtrack for a montage in a 2017 remake of a John Hughes movie. “86G" fades the album out over three minutes and forty seven seconds of audio performance art. Clearly, the “Side B” of Subculture has more substance and texture than the sunbaked afternoon marina party of Side A.

Touted by the label as the successors to all of the aforementioned first wave of new wave / synthpop, Parralox’s Subculture doesn’t quite live up to the billing. It’s too bright but it finishes strong and might just liven up your next outdoor cocktail party.

Charles “Chuck” MOORHOUSE
16/04/2017


 

Next reviews
DURBUY ROCK • New Model Army loves a hopeless cause... | Durbuy, Belgium | 08.04.2017
JOHN FOXX AND THE MATHS • The Machine
DIVE • Underneath
MOEBIUS • Musik Fur Metropolis
HAUSCHKA • Live in the AB, Brussels | 07.04.2017
TEN AFTER DAWN • Best Of Both Words
LUDUS • Nue au Soleil (Completement)
JESUS AND MARY CHAIN • Damage and Joy
X MARKS THE PEDWALK • Secrets
WAVE GOTIK TREFFEN • Some postpunk, indie, coldwave bands to discover at WGT 2017 (Leipzig, D)

 

Other reviews from PARRALOX
PARRALOX • Wildlife

 

Same combination of genres: POP + SYNTH POP / ELECTRO POP
MONICA RICHARDS & ANTHONY JONES • AESTUARIUM
CAISARON • Reflection
EMOTIKON • Two Of A Kind
NINA K. • On Ice
TRUE ZEBRA • True Zebra
ERASURE • Tomorrow's World (Deluxe Edition)
CELLULOIDE • Ordinosaure
WELLE:ERDBALL • Der Kalte Krieg
SILENT CIRCLE • No 1
SECTION 25 • Invicta EP

 

Same genre: POP
LISA MORGENSTERN • Chameleon
TYCHO BRAHE • Triplex [Complete]
FORMER BULLIES • Stranger
NINE MILLION WITCHES • The Rapture
AGNES OBEL • Citizen Of Glass
NOSOUND • Scintilla
GRACE JONES • Warm Leatherette
LEVEL 42 • Mechelen, Maanrock (28/08/2016)
A LINN THING • Mechelen, Maanrock (27/08/2016)
LALALOVER • Rijmenam, Rijmrock (20/08/2016)

 

Same genre: SYNTH POP / ELECTRO POP
STURM CAFE • Fernes Land
DD SANCHEZ • StRaNgE
ERASURE • THE NEON
HER OWN WORLD • A Different Kind Of Reality
AUGER • Insurgence
UNITCODE:MACHINE • Paper empires
COLD IN MAY • Koma:Redux
SHE HATES EMOTIONS • See The Light (Single)
LUCKY AND LOVE • Transitions
LADYTRON • Ladytron

Music reviews

23
01
STURM CAFE
Fernes Land
18
01
DISTANT VOICES
Long Road to Home
17
01
FRONT LINE ASSEMBLY
Mechanical Soul
16
01
IMPLANT
Phantom Pain
15
01
DD SANCHEZ
StRaNgE
10
01
BLACK SNOW IN SUMMER
Lost Feelings

NEWSLETTER

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter.

NEWS

24
01
Today, exactly 30 years ago Front 242 released the album Tyranny ▶For You◀
24
01
Today, 3 years ago, Mark E. Smith, singer of legendary post-punk band The Fall died, aged 60
22
01
On this day, 11 years ago, Nitzer Ebb released their sixth studio album Industrial Complex!
21
01
Today, exactly 28 years ago, Ministry released Just One Fix!
19
01
On this day, 30 years ago (19 January 1991), The Cure performed at The Great British Music Awards!
18
01
On this day, 41 ago, John Foxx released his first solo project album Metamatic!

Concert reviews

24
09
RED ZEBRA
29 augustus 2020 - Zarlarswing

GET A COPY OF OUR MAGAZINE
SEND TO YOUR HOME

INTERVIEWS

07
01
MAMAN KUSTERS
‘Let’s Keep It Intriguing
16
12
THE BREATH OF LIFE
'No, I never considered quitting making music. Nor to taste good special beers.'
05
12
CEVIN KEY (SKINNY PUPPY, DOWNLOAD)
'It really has been like the formation of a new band in a lot of ways...'
03
12
ALEX SKOLNICK (TESTAMENT, ALEX SKOLNICK TRIO)
'I was as knocked out as I was hearing Van Halen...'
14
11
PROYECTO MIRAGE
I Think We Needed A Break

PHOTOS

25
09
PETER HEPPNER
Strandkorb Open Air Mönchengladbach
20
09
STAR-INDUSTRY
Liège New Wave Festival
20
09
DEER DEAR
Liège New Wave Festival
20
09
LARVA
Liège New Wave Festival
20
09
LIZARD SMILE
Liège New Wave Festival
20
09
DELERITAS
Liège New Wave Festival
20
08
JUSTIN SULLIVAN & GASTONE
Kreisverwaltung Groß-Gerau

ADVERTISE
IN PEEK-A-BOO

VIDEO CLIPS

24
01
BUZZ KULL
Last in the club
23
01
KALTE NACHT
Voices in silence
22
01
SYNAPTIC DEFECT
Tacky games
21
01
ROB ZOMBIE
The Triumph of King Freak (A Crypt of Preservation and Superstition)
20
01
NEW ORDER
True Faith
19
01
CORDE OBLIQUE
Suono su tela
18
01
KAI SCHUMACHER
The Hug (Rework by Illuminine)