This album pretends to have the secret spousal angst that belies every Mates of State recording, but the whole thing feels like forced digital sugar rush.
Is this becoming a sudden, random subgenre? Single women armed with keyboards and keen avant-pop sensibilities suddenly going out and claiming 2008 as their own? It started off with Tickley Feather and is now moving on to Norway's Soda Fountain Rag (aka Rahnhild Hogstad Jordahl). With her snappy debut album (barely crossing the half-hour mark), Jordahl has lo-fi programmed beats serve as the basis for her ever-so-simple synth pluckings. The problem? They're too simple: this album pretends to have the secret spousal angst that belies every Mates of State recording, but the whole thing feels like forced digital sugar rush: an album for kids to dance around to while wearing off their sugar rushes. Though a majority of the songs are instantly forgettable, there are some genuinely fantastic tracks to be found, primarily with the sunny indie-pop of "Monkey Boy" and the juicy, '80s synth workout "The Saddest Boy Again". Beyond that, however, there's not a whole lot to recommend, making this subgenre feel like a passing fad more than anything else.