As it turns out, randomly picking albums I’ve never heard of to listen to based 100% on cover art I find attractive is proving to be a viable method of discovering good new music. So far my Album Art Porn project has yielded three new-to-me albums with at least a 7/10 rating, and today it produced another winner. I’m 4 and 0.
Today’s discovery came about during a highly scientific process in which I typed a bunch of words into Google Image Search and skimmed through the results. The words I input were “candy,” “electric,” “feverish,” and “album.” This is the image I was most compelled to click on:
If I were a more attractive, fashion-conscientious kind of girl (and dropped about 20 pounds) and like a thousand times more narcissistic, I would totally have a Warholesque self-portrait like this hanging in my living room. I would even glue jewels to my face, or whatever those are supposed to be on her left cheek. It’s hip, it’s glamorous, it says, “I went crazy with the fuchsia eye shadow by smearing it all over my head and look at all the fucks I give!”
I must have an affinity for those shocking shades of hot pink and electric blue, because that’s the same color combination that drew me to The Electric Punanny Mixtapes which ended up being unimaginably awesome. The above album is called Beatbox. It was released in 2007 and is the second studio album of the electronic outfit Glass Candy, who Wikipedia describes as being a blend of No Wave, glam rock and Italo Disco–so far so good.
But what does it sound like?
The first track was an awkward but intriguing introduction. It starts off like an 80s aerobics class with the instructor encouraging everyone to “work that body!” over a simplistic beat, and then vocalist Ida No gives something of a cheesy pseudo-lesson in metaphysics: “Our world, our lives, our bodies, they are constantly changing. But there’s a rhythm that runs through it all and that’s where we’ll find our true selves. We live in a universe of transformations, but the heavenly beat is a constant. So keep on dancing!” OK, space lady!
The rest of the tracks are pure gold. Some of them, like “Last Night I Met a Costume,” could be part of the score for Beyond the Black Rainbow. Breathy, sensual female vocals over heavy synth waves, chill, low-frequency bass lines and simple electrical beats with frequent square and sawtooth leads. (At times like these, when I’m trying to describe the subtle differences in electronic music styles, I wish my musical knowledge was more expansive.) None of it is very melodic, but it all sounds so very avant-garde and 1984-ish, much like that Rise of the Obsidian Interstellar chiptunes album I reviewed a while back. I thoroughly enjoyed all 9 tracks of this Beatbox album and fully plan on further delving into Glass Candy’s other synth-tastic musical offerings.
8 out of 10 stars.
What is Album Art Porn?
A recurring feature in which I randomly pick an album I’ve never heard of to listen to and review based solely on its cover art. It could turn out to be the most amazing thing I’ve ever heard…or completely suck.