Pop Star Kids: This is Pop Star Kids


By Steve Lichtenstein

Perhaps, in your post-Y2K sigh-of-relief-contentment-mode, you thought that the eighties were behind you, never to resurface again. You thought that Kajagoogoo, neon Converse, and Perfect Strangers had all had their day in court (come back Bronson, we miss you). Alas, that will never be, since as the sixties and seventies keep being regurgitated, why not the eighties? But what those decades had, in their own bizarre way, that the eighties mostly didn’t, have, was a decent music. Yet the hideous sound of the Reagan decade keeps getting rehashed, for some ungodly reason. The perpetrators this time: Pop Star Kids.

Even though This is Pop Star Kids displays a fair affinity for a decent melody, it’s the package that melody comes in which should put these NYC popsters away for life. Say hello again to synthesizers, vocal echo effects, oddly misplaced sound effects right out of Star Trek, and lame drum loops. Welcome to hell. What kills you is that, take away these egregious blemishes, and you have bearable material…kind of. The opening “New Leash on Life” has the bouncy, jaded feel of Elastica’s “Connection,” but then again “All Broke Down” is almost the same song—brief novelty thwarted. And try not to think Knight Rider meets Daft Punk when you try even harder to listen to “Grey Skies, Blue Skies, In Your Eyes it’s All the Same.”

All in all, This is Pop Star Kids (did I even mention the imitation Sex Pistols cover? It’s the best part) it’s a busted attempt at recreating or paying homage to a sound and an era that needs nor warrants neither. This wouldn’t have even sounded good then, and that’s saying something.

Published at: http://www.popmatters.com/pm/review/popstarkids-this/