Fischerspooner’s Casey Spooner may hate nostalgia, but his group’s debut, #1, is certainly a sonic retro feast, referencing ‘80s synth-pop, Eno-esque soundscapes and Giorgio Moroder basslines throughout. The album’s opening track, “Sweetness,” is reminiscent of Depeche Mode and Yaz, its lip-smacking hooks hidden beneath distorted vocals and a pulsating canopy of computer blips and beats. Two of the album’s best tracks, the infectious first single “Emerge,” already a hit in Europe, and “L.A. Song,” don’t get off the ground until halfway through but they soar and bump along with fervor once they finally do. Other tracks, however, just seem like exercises in reconstructing the past. “The 15th” is bona fide lo-fi retro but it simply rehashes and adds nothing new to the equation. Signs of warmth are few and fleeting: “Tone Poem” is a cold, minimalist dirge based on lyrics found in an 1895 Physics textbook. Other tracks, like the provocative “Mega C,” seem derivative of Fischerspooner contemporaries like Air and Daft Punk. The album’s grinding and oscillating basslines and spacey synths masquerading as electric guitars recall Mirwais’s own Production. But while #1 may not be, as NME declared, “the best thing to happen to music since electricity,” the album provides unswerving energy from start to finish.
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