Ladyhawke | Ladyhawke

Modular (2008)
By DANIEL BROCKMAN  |  October 15, 2008
3.5 3.5 Stars
As the world as we know it slowly grinds to a halt, with uncertainty, doubt, and fear filling our periphery and entering our waking dreams, it’s comforting to count on the musical scavengers of the present to make music that, though still sounding new and exciting, also excites those little tympanic nerve endings in a familiar way. New Zealand multi-instrumentalist Pip Brown a/k/a Ladyhawke presents us with a treasure trove of found blips, as if the 1980s had been nothing but a gigantic mirror ball to smash and paste back together (e.g., the blatant appropriation of the melody of Fleetwood Mac’s Christine McVie–sung hit “Little Lies” in the chorus of “Love Don’t Live Here”). Stylistic consistency be damned: for every moment of Gary Numan–esque synth hum, there are cheesy Super Bowl halftime Van Hagar keyboard rah-rahs. Still, there are enough silky-yet-catchy melodies and bludgeoning power choruses that you won’t stop to wonder whether this is supposed to be ironic dance music or crossover rock/pop or hip indie whatever. Album highlight “Back of a Van” asks you to “set me on fire”; it’s a track that could have been abducted by Birthday Party–era Nick Cave and transformed into a scorched-earth drearfest without losing anything but the original’s walking-on-sunshine bounce.
Related: Battle of the banned, Stop making sense, Air | Love 2, More more >
  Topics: CD Reviews , Fleetwood Mac, Gary Numan, Nick Cave,  More more >
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