Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Blast from the Past: Electronic

Title:  Electronic (Amazon, AllMusic, Wikipedia)
Artist:  Electronic (, AllMusic, Wikipedia)

Electronic was a Manchester, England super group that combined the talents of Johnny Marr (The Smiths) with Bernard Sumner (New Order).  Their resulting self-titled debut—recorded in 1990 and released in 1991—is a bit of a mixed bag honestly.  The songs are very electronic in nature (hence the name) with some guitar thrown over for good measure and some include Sumner attempting to rap (which sometimes works and sometimes doesn’t).  In many ways Electronic sounds like a New Order record, or it least sounded a lot like the New Order record Republic released in 1993. 

While this record is hit or miss overall, the three singles alone are worth the price of admission.  I first heard Electronic when I saw the video for “Get the Message” on 120 Minutes and was blown away (and back to my New Order comparison, listen to “Get the Message” and then listen to “Regret” and tell me that the Electronic record didn’t influence New Order).  The other two singles “Getting Away with It” and “Feel Every Beat” are just as good (the latter includes some of that aforementioned rapping but it actually works here). 

In many ways this album is a product of its time.  That pre-Nirvana era in alternative music where Manchester was the big town on the block and dancey music was the thing…that is this record.  Because of that, I’m not sure how many people who weren’t involved with the scene at the time will get this album.  It certainly is a must for any New Order fan or diehard Johnny Marr completist but outside of that this is a record that will probably be lost to nostalgia. 

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