America’s dive bar stages and low-budget films, pornographic and otherwise, are littered with the seedy sounds of acts such as Frank Alpine. Built upon cheesy keyboard effects, horror rock clichés, and the rigid, unimaginative beats that only drum machines can bring, lads and ladies such as this bring a touch of fun to our otherwise dull lives as they recall the golden age of Fad Gadget, Wall of Voodoo, and others who worked these sounds when they were as still fresh as vampire novels. By the album’s second track, “Heart Is Grey”, the whole gimmick wears thin. It becomes like listening to a precocious but attention-seeking thirteen-year-old making lip farts in the back seat of the family car for two hours. Then you have to sit through six more tracks.
// Notes from the Road
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