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Boy Eats Drum Machine

Pleasure

(self-released; US: 13 Jun 2006; UK: Available as import)

Um… Bright Eyes does synthpop with more sampling?  Whatever it is, Boy Eats Drum Machine’s debut full-length Pleasure is an interesting listen, and not just for the incongruity between the electronic noises and the acoustic emofication.  Boy Eats Drum Machine, for the sake of this album, is basically one guy (his name’s Jonny Ragel) in his basement with a sampler, a CD full of breaks, and a few instruments.  The resulting album is quirky and endearing in its willingness to go pretty much anywhere with the sounds at his disposal—opener “Pleasure Theme Song” sort of sounds like Depeche Mode as done by a Prince cover band, and “The Taste of Your Mouth” sounds like authentic garage rock with all of the repetitive tendencies that implies—but absolutely none of these songs coalesces into something that’s enjoyable on a visceral level.  It’s interesting because it is what it is, it’s interesting because Ragel’s beats are largely sampled off a single CD full of breaks (Bridgetown Breaks, Vol. 1), and it’s interesting because it’s impossible to get a handle on any discernable personality.  That’s it.  Pleasure is interesting.  It’s just not very lovable.

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Mike Schiller is a software engineer in Buffalo, NY who enjoys filling the free time he finds with media of any sort -- music, movies, and lately, video games. Stepping into the role of PopMatters Multimedia editor in 2006 after having written music and game reviews for two years previous, he has renewed his passion for gaming to levels not seen since his fondly-remembered college days of ethernet-enabled dorm rooms and all-night Goldeneye marathons. His three children unconditionally approve of their father's most recent set of obsessions.


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