2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 27 June 2006
Let's get one thing straight. This isn't a rock album, or an emo album or even an indie album. The clue is in the title- this is a pop record.
Even more so than 2004's `Decadence', this is an album that channels the spirit of Duran Duran, Elvis Costello and Roxy Music onto modern mixing boards, hell even Abba get a look in. Opening tune and first single `Graduation Day' doesn't immediately dig those retro influences, sounding more like The Used on uppers, but it does make for a catchy and convincing return. The next few tracks are sublime with `Lying Through Your Teeth' a glam-powered highlight. There are issues though. It's slick and it's smart and it's sweet but at times this is horribly half-baked. `Scandalous' never really takes off while `Million Dollar Decision' and `She's Not It' sound like average ideas left unfinished. The ghost of Glassjaw looms larger than before too. `Shot In The Back' could be a B-side to `Ape Dos Mil' and on `K Horse' Daryl Palumbo's distinct vocals and inspired lyrics seem to ache for his other (old?) band's harsh discord and riotous anger.
A mixed bag then that at it's worst sounds like a bad 80s trip. At it's best though `Popaganda' is genuine soulful excess set to captivate dancefloors almost everywhere.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 13 June 2006
Decadence was a great album. Dan Nakamura's dance beats and techno influenced edge ran smoothly alongside Daryl Palumbo's almost-soulful vocals and the rest of Automatica's punk sound to create perhaps the only true rock-hybrid of the past few years.
The most noticeable thing about H.A.'s new album for me, has been the publicity. Adverts left, right and center seem to be cramming first single 'Graduation Day' down our ears, whilst the first album basically relied on good old 'word of mouth' to transmit it's way into our heads.
I feel this commerical edge is the perfect example of this album's kudos. Most songs on this album, instead of having the great dance-rock feel of the decadence, settle almost into middle of the road emo. I'm sorry to say it, but Graduation Day could have been written by My Chemical Romance, it's that bland and straight forward. Songs 2 + 3 (Single's fodder) "Laughing at you" and "Lying through your teeth" are equally as inept and devoid of anything 'Decadent'. Dan Nakamura's departure has obviously shown up where the hip-moving beats came from.
However, it's not all bad. "Nowhere Fast", "Egyptian Musk" and "K-Horse" are easily as good as anything from the first album, whilst tracks like "God" are so OTT and cheesy that they somehow work.
Overall this album is worth owning. It's just not as good as the first H.A. album. I fear 'Decadence' may be a one-off album of lovelyness.
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 7 May 2006
Daryl Palumbo singer of legendary post-hardcore revolutionarys Glassjaw decided one day to do something a little different.
Which is how we get to Head Automatica, and the reason that they sound like every band you have ever danced to, at the same time making you constantly cock your head in wonder at the delicious vocal licks mixed with the smooth bass lines and energetic lead work. This is the magic of Head Atuomatica, using a safe and easy genre such as modern dance pop and spinning it on its heels and keeping it fresh enough with the unique vocal melodies and daring delivery.
Whereas "Decadence" (HA's debut full length) lacked in consistency "Popaganda!!!" totally makes lives up to Daryl's legacy and his army of hardcore fans will be in pure dance heaven.
Please do not expect this to be a progression on Decadence's elecro-dance or Glassjaw's balls out agression . This is pure "dance around your room, sing into the mirror" pop - rock, all the better for it too!!!
The highlight of "Decadence" was the incredible single "Beating Heart Baby" and Daryl must have realised this, re-using the tracks producer Howard Benson, this really is one giant Beating Heart Baby, but that really isnt a bad thing, they have found their strength and push themselves into places pop hasnt seen since The Cure.
Buy it. Enjoy it, then Dance your ass off every time "Graduation Day" (first single) comes on the radio!!
Standout tracks: Scandalous, Cannibal Girl.
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 21 July 2006
This like Decadance is a great album in my opinion. H.A really are like an Elvis Costello and the attractions for the 21st century which again im my opinion is great! I have to be honest though it took me a good four listens to really get into it. stand out tracks for me are Curious,God and Shot In The Back (The Platypus) and im glad warner brothers are getting behind them and giving them the promotion they deserve.