[30 May 2012]
This Canadian trio calls to mind the Smiths, Joy Division, and Depeche Mode as well as that hyperactive kid who sat in front of you in first grade. There’s a manic, magic energy to “Teenager”, “Satellites”, and “Sarah Smith” on a record that’s probably about 20 minutes too long and easily 20 years too late with production that’s icier than an Edmonton winter. The retro vibe shouldn’t deter listeners and neither should the cold isolation. That was the point, after all, of British synth pop and certainly the point here. A handful of the songs could have been left off to improve on material such as “We Will Become Enemies” which, with a little more polishing, could have been a classic for this decade. “Dread City”, one of the epic tunes, almost realizes the group’s full promise. More––and less––please.