Some fantastic music was releaed in 2002, and I managed to churn
through a large amount of it despite the demise of Audiogalaxy as a useful method
for musical discovery.
Perhaps the most exciting movement to come to the fore in 2002 was
the Electroclash idea, or "Electrocash" to its critics. A
future-retro musical movement with a distinctive electro sound
reminiscent of 80s electro-pop but with a more polished,
The most successful, yet least talented, of the Electrocash
phenomenon were probably Fischerspooner who scored a
million pound deal with Ministry of Sound in 2002. While FS are
blatantly money-driven, cashing in on the hype, they're also very
clearly taking the piss and enjoying the bullshit machine they have
built. We were lucky enough to catch their gig at David Bowie's
Meltdown in London. The gig combined high camp values (coresetted
dancing bimbos miming to the music) with high-tech lighting and
effects -- think geeks set loose in a theatrical effects store with
someone else's chequebook. Great fun and suitably silly.
More substantial musically were Crossover
and Ladytron. I saw Crossover
twice last year. Once at a small Electrolash gig at the ICA and again at Fabric. Both gigs were
great. Standout tracks from their album Fantasmo:
Phostographt and Extensive Care.
Ladytron had a fantastic album, 604, in 2001, neatly
pre-empting the whole Electroclash hype machine. Their 2002 album,
Light & Magic, was for some reason released in the UK a lot
later than the North American release. Strange for a UK band.
Anyway, the new album was pretty good, particularly the track
Seventeen. Ladytron played a London gig that I managed to
catch. Despite being incredibly crowded, they played a fantastic set
and really had the crowd in the palm of their hands, no mean feat for
a band without the usual on-stage histrionics.
My most exciting musical find for the year was Detroit band Adult who
put out a late-2001 album, Resuscitation. Their incredible
robotic electro has infectious rhythms with crunchy sounds and really
well made vocoder vocals. If you only take note of one thing on this
page, check out Adult.