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Customer reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
8
Lightbulbs
Format: Audio CD|Change
Price:£7.99+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime

on 24 July 2017
:)
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on 13 August 2013
I'm not sure if this will remain in my playlist for that long, but i'm enjoying it for the moment. Good funked up jams.
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on 10 August 2015
Remarkable sounds. Mentions Lena Zavaroni and Macaroni in the same sentence.
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on 9 February 2016
A very nice product, snazzy little case too.
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on 8 September 2015
Great electro pop from this Brighton band. If you like Can this is for you.
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VINE VOICEon 15 October 2008
On first listen I didn't get Lightbulbs. How one dimensional and resolutely dull I thought as it ( I perceived at the time) droned out of the speakers. Yet , not for the first time , I must point out that only a complete dunce writes off an album on the first listen so I gave Lightbulbs another chance .....then another and you know what? Suddenly that little light popped on over my head. Ohhh the irony .
It makes much more sense now this album . Its a subtle blend of electronic pop , watered down Krautrock and low key techno with deadpan vocals courtesy of David Best. The duo sound exotic and foreign , Japanese maybe ?, but are in fact from Brighton .Indeed they aren't even a duo but a four piece. Nothing it seems is quite what it seems with this band. Except the songs that is .A couple are great, most are seductively fine , one or two are rather dull no matter how many times you listen to them.
Opening track "Knickerbocker " is a hugely enjoyable locked groove of a song sprinkled with non-sequiturs about Lena Zavaroni and ice cream. Talking of ice cream final track "Hundreds And Thousands" is a motorick delight with spangled keyboards .It's like Stereolab covering Jean Michel Jarre except better than that sounds ....or maybe worse- you take your pick depending on how you feel about both of those.
"Uh " is a rather witty little number with the syncopation between the word and the deep bottomed bass cleverly done .Unfortunately they then repeat this trick with" Pickpocket" which on it's own merits is okay but straight after "UH" pales in comparison. ."Goosebumps " though is a more elegiac number with lovely layers of glowing keyboards - like Leonard Cohen mixed with Tangerine Dream. "Sore Thumb" has a nicely undulated bass line and some neat keyboard sequences but not much else and "Rook To Queens Pawn Six" is about as interesting as a game of chess. "Dishwasher" is lithe approximation of what Shriekback would sound like if they ,d been as sleazy as Prince ."Pterodactyls " should be extinct with it's prissy little keyboards but "Pussyfooting " while repetitive as least has the nous to recycle a good idea/tune. The title track is an almost bluesy ballad with shivery chords and is both sinister and seductive.
Light bulbs doesn't really engage the listener on any great emotional level and also lacks the true allure and joy of great pop but somehow it wiggles its way into the affections, It's doubtful you will fall head over heels for this album but then it's unlikely you'll be chucking it in the next charity bag either. It'll be there for you when you need it. Which in all honesty won't be often but when you do it will provide understated enchantment. And failing that it's classy cover will look terrific on the shelves.
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on 9 January 2009
Fujiya & Miyagi - also known as the very un-Japanese and un-duo-like David Best, Steve Lewis and Matt Hainsby - are part of a indie/electronica scene, including the likes of Baikonour (aka Jean-Emmanuel Kreiger) and Imitation Electric Piano, that seem to share in Lee Adams a mercenary percussionist. Like Baikonour, Fujiya & Miyagi blend Krautrock influences to indie and funky electro, but where they differ to Jean-Emmanuel Kreiger's work is that 'Lightbulbs' is almost entirely song-orientated. David Best's weirdly enuciated vocals have a Japanese quality about them: imagine Can's Damo Suzuki crossed with James Murphy's half-spoken funk posturing. While the nods to motorik, funk and electro are deftly assembled, the result is not dissimilar to Hot Chip's geeky blend of synth pop and white-boy r'n'b: the self-depreciating English humour, the tongue-in-cheek braggadocio, songs about domestic life (dishwashers and, well, lightbulbs).

After the fine one-two sucker punch of the opening two tracks, 'Knickerbocker' and 'Uh', Lightbulbs never quite regains its swaggering self-assurance. The former builds stealthily around chugging Krautrock, electronics, and the bizarre lyrics ("vanilla, strawberry, knickerbocker glory ... I saw the ghost of Lena Zavaroni"), while 'Uh' out-Hot Chips Hot Chip with its pseudo-sexiness and funky electro. After this, the rest of the album is largely variations on the same themes, especially the latter, except for the aforementioned 'Dishwasher' ("when you're pre-menstrual, I will play chill-out compilation instrumentals"), with its stripped down bass and skittering beats, and 'Lightbulbs', a ballad about being stuck in a domestic rut. While 'Lightbulbs' is fresh and compelling, one senses the best is yet to come.
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on 25 January 2009
I was a really big fan of their previous album, transparent things, which thumped along very nicely to a funky bass that could be Can or the Happy Mondays, with lyrics occasionally reminiscent of the latter. The tunes were catchy but the album wasn't back to back with them; space was left between them for electronic noodling, which seems to give the big tunes more of an impact when they came along. It was a nicely served dish of innovative electro pop, and it deserved a lot more success than it realised.

The good news is that the quality hasn't dropped with Lightbulbs. The bad news is that this album feels like the band have hardly moved on at all. My first listen was one of disappointment; second time round I noticed a few tunes I quite liked, but I still had this feeling of being underwhelmed. I would recommend getting this album if you haven't heard F&M before, or are a fan of their work. If you have heard them before and aren't that keen, this album will do nothing to change your mind.
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