Saddle Creek | The Faint | Reviews


Blank-wave Arcade

Author: -mb
11/01/1999 | Hand Carved Magazine | | Album Review
rating 5 out of 5 stars

With their second full-length album, "Blank-Wave Arcade," the Faint have matured by leaps and bounds since their debut, "Media." With their latest effort, they are moving further from their indie rock roots and drifting into the driving beats and infectious melodies normally found in the Industrial / Gothic / Electronic / Eighties dance clubs. Musically speaking, I could just as easily imagine them being on tour with At the Drive-In or the Get Up Kids as I could with Depeche Mode or the Machines of Loving Grace. They submerge the listener in to a sea of synthesizers and unusual electronic noises, but retain a certain warmth and humanity in their songs instead of drowning them in the cold, detached, computer-generated, emotionless feel that one might expect to find in this genre. If Trent Reznor had an indie rock / industrial band before the release of Nine Inch Nails' monumental "Pretty Hate Machine," it could have very well been the Faint. Just as in "Pretty Hate Machine," they even have a few songs overlapping and flowing into the next making the experience of the album as a whole more important than any individual song. But if I had to pick favorites, I'd go with the opening track, "Sex Is Personal," the third track, "Worked Up So Sexual," and the fourth track "Cars Pass In Cold Blood," but that's not to say that I don't love all the others. It might be easy to dismiss them as an '80s throwback band, but I think there is something more to them. By both acknowledging the music that came before them and adding a bit of their own personality to it, the Faint update a classic dark wave sound for the new millennium.
Blank-wave Arcade

Blank-wave Arcade

LP / CD / MP3