Rival Consoles – IO

IO is a great mix of no-nonsense simple arrangements and moments of, well pop glory.

 

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Big thumping electro dance tunes: however boneheaded, I’m a sucker for them. And the Rival Consoles’ debut LP delivers such music in spades. IO is a great mix of no-nonsense simple arrangements and moments of, well pop glory. 1985 and ARP are absolutely magnificent examples of how to make music that people want to dance to. The opening salvo of tracks is particularly addictive: Milo, IO, and 1985 mix slightly abstract moods, tough, uncompromising synths, (at times it gets very Neue Deutsche Welle) and heart-rending harmonies, especially in the aforementioned 1985.

 

There is a very German vibe to this record: in many ways it picks up spiritually where Kraftwerk’s thumping The Mix left off. The relentless Electorate could have been a lost track off Computer World, albeit considerably beefed up… The thumping beat brings to mind New Order’s more rigorous moments: Perfect Kiss, stuff like that. IO enjoys a brief period of cut –up abstraction amidships; the wonderful Preoccupied Fashion Bastard, XPR VR and PVAR glory in their unpredictability.

 

The LP ends on a bang with the ground-shaking ARP (what is it with these titles?) that switches between a soulful synth reflection and stentorian beats. Marvellous stuff.