Reviews

Blank-wave Arcade

Author: chris richards
12/01/1999 | Held Like Sound | Album Review
The '80s ushered in pop cultures most loved and loathed thirteen letter
word: postmodernism. But in terms of music, only hip-hop, new-wave, and no-wave exemplified it. Now it's 1999, and we're witnessing a renaissance of all three genres, making the whole past/present pastiche even more postmodern than it's first incarnation! Does anyone care? Probably not. So let's talk about how fantastic The Faint is. Sure, the first impression they give is of retro-new-wave now. Synthesizers, compressed vocals, electronic drums and flashing lights galore. But these mechanisms do more than flash you back to your days of elementary school-bus radio. By going completely over the top with '80s adornments, The Faint have actually manipulated new-wave bombast to understate the amazing song writing that propels these songs so effortlessly. Underneath every synthesized blur hides a beautiful harmony. Underneath every drum-machine shot hides a percussive catharsis. Underneath every Flock of Seagulls hairdo lies a collective songwriting brilliance that's urgent and explosive. The Faint, consciously or not, have lured us in with context only to challenge us to divorce ourselves from it. Who would have though that a record could be mesmerizing, brilliant AND fun? -
Blank-wave Arcade

Blank-wave Arcade

LP / CD / MP3