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    the invisible line

    19 7 ( 2008 )
    Don't Mess With Me / Joy / Blame / It's Better To Have Loved / Not That Big / Knock Me Out / Crime / Battleships / Little White Lie / Invisible Ink (Prelude) / Invisible Ink / Winter's Coming

    Temposhark are a new band from London. Think of Erasure meets Depeche Mode with hints of other eighties synth acts and a little darkness thrown in amidst the pop. A duo in true synth-pop fashion, Robert Diament and Luke Busby ( on beeps ) have enjoyed a growing industry buzz leading upto the release of 'Invisible Line', their debut LP. A little 80s nostalgia makes a welcome change from 70s nostalgia, even if 'Ashes To Ashes' is no 'Life On Mars' in the TV stakes. Many have tried and failed to update that early 80s synth-pop sound, usually because they forget the most important part, the tunes. Temposhark have some tunes, we'll see how many a little further down the line, I guess. Guy Stigsworth produces a couple of tracks, 'Not That Big' is a duet with Imogen Heap and violinist Sophie Solomon adds texture to a couple of songs here and there. What else does this remind me of? Not sure, but 'Invisible Line' hints at a lot of things and has enough melody, if not neccessarily originality, to view them as potential contenders in the future. They certainly make an effort, after the strings and drama of 'Don't Mess With Me' the album plunges straight into critically acclaimed single, 'Joy'. Think of glam beats, think of Scissor Sisters, Fisherspooner. Actually, where 'Joy' is concerned, you can also think it's better than the lot of them. Luke Busby seems to be a man constantly searching for new ways of doing things, and even if he doesn't always succeed, again, it's refreshing that at least he tries.

    The album tends to vary between the uptempo stompers and softer pieces, synth-ballads, if you will. 'Knock Me Out' then is in a similar vein to 'Joy', the Imogen Heap collaboration 'Not That Big' is a highlight, a thrill when turned up loud. Of the quieter tracks, 'Invisible Ink' works for me, the vocals smooth against the jagged edges that pop up musically above the synth-drones. It's a well constructed album, something the synth acts often fail to manage to do is inject variety in their music. 'Invisible Line' is clearly the work of one band, yet does manage to vary the tempo and mood across twelve tracks. It's grower for me, initially the album sounds pretty ordinary, but repeated listens imbed the melodies and hooks in your mind, good stuff. 'Blame' is a favourite in our house, the wife likes it as well, so I can play this album more than I can Captain Beefheart, if you know what I mean? That Temposhark have such obvious broad appeal whilst retaining innovation and ideas shouldn't mean the indie-snobs come out in force and destroy them. We shall see what transpires, but I wish them luck myself and thank them for making enjoyable music.

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    this page last updated 04/03/08

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