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Customer Review

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Only One Word, 13 Oct. 2011
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This review is from: 1234 (Audio CD)
A midnight blue satin glove rests on a Hugo Boss leg in a Carrera 4s pulling into GVA, as Your Wildlife fades from the Clarion.

This is a Propaganda album. And leaving that immediately to one side, 1,2,3,4 is a sumptuous collection of beautifully crafted synth-pop songs from a time when Miami Vice had run its course, the Ur-Quattro was becoming an anachronism, and Britpop playgroups were politely waiting to squat into the void left by its inevitable quadrophenic epiphany, as adulthood, responsibility, and recession finally consigned a decade of unashamed, technology-fuelled, indulgence to history.

This is a polished, sophisticated and intricate work of classy, evocative, cosmopolitan pop music. Except, ostensibly, for Vicious Circle and Ministry of Fear - the most "Propaganda-esque" of the tracks, there are no dark edges - musically, lyrically, or in the production - no edges at all, in fact.

It's easy to imagine the reprise of Vicious accompanying some of Michael Mann's imagery. On How Much Love, Betsi Miller's voice releases a hope that almost leaves the listener suspended in mid-air before each verse is first resolved, and then grounded by the chorus. Heaven Give Me Words is just consummately executed late summer pop sunshine. Wound In My Heart cordially fills a lighter waving slot and balances the remainder inoffensively enough, while La Carne, La Morte E Il Diavolo paints a cinematic soundscape more involving than any by Yello.

This album slots straight into the "unjustly overlooked" box without need even to consider the more commercially rewarded wood-chip offerings before, during and since.

If you listen without caring who, what, why, when, or how, it will stay on repeat through the winter nights well into next summer. If you come looking for Propaganda, as other reviewers have opined, perhaps you'll be disappointed... then again, like me, maybe you'll be captivated.

The 80's were over. This album underlines their passing to perfection. Only One Word: Beautiful.
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 23 Nov 2012 18:59:38 GMT
David McCann says:
This review is a candidate for Private Eye's Pseuds' Corner, and then some ...
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