Saturday, 24th June 2017. 10:03:58am ET
Reviews CD Reviews Synthpop, New Wave The Thought Criminals- Die Young, Stay Pretty


ARTIST: The Thought Criminals

ALBUM: Die Young: Stay Pretty

LABEL: WTII Records

REVIEWER: Matthew J.

DATE: 2-17-09

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Delivering funky, techno-inspired modern synthpop with an exceedingly bad attitude and a whole lot of British wit, this UK duo's debut is one of the more unique offerings to come along in quite some time. Though a fondness for breakbeats and a penchant for sardonic, deadpan lyrics brings to mind a less industrial version of Sheep on Drugs, vocalist Rocky Goode and programmer Kirlian Blue have created something quite original. If Sheep on Drugs are best-known for their cynical sneers and jungle-inspired beats, Goode and Blue's tracks are just as nasty in thematic terms, but their pop melodies and sing-along choruses are so deceptively upbeat it's almost hard to remember that Goode is singing songs about such horrible things. The falsetto chorus on "My Baby's a Suicide Bomber" is so perky you'll take no notice that you're singing along to a song about terrorism, and "Date Rape Lovers" is tasteless but gloriously infectious. It's that blend of unapologetic pop hooks and hilariously provocative songwriting that really makes this album; songs that attempt a more serious edge, like "(I'm Gonna Be A) Celebrity" are solidly crafted but repetitive in places, though "Minimal" is catchy in its titular minimalism in the same way as fellow UK dance act Underworld at their best. Though its 10 songs run a little on the short side, the CD comes packed with no less than seven bonus remixes, including a spaced out electro version of "Minimal" and an extended house mix of "Date Rape Lovers" by Ed Strazdas, so this is more than worth your money if you're in the mood to, as the final album track encourages, "Party 'Till the Police Come." Check it out if you're a fan of The Prodigy, Sheep on Drugs, or Fatboy Slim.

Visit the Thought Criminals at www.thoughtcriminals.com.


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