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Le Concorde

Le Concorde
Self-Titled EP
(Spade Kitty Records)

Oh my goodness. When I pop in this newest EP by Le Concorde, I feel like I've instantly been transported back to the 80s. Granted, the production on this release is way more beefy than most of that stuff, but this is pure synth pop with an edge that seemed to haunt John Hughes movies and just about everything else back then. Although Le Concorde might not be familiar to most people, members John Ashton and Mars Williams played in a band that most have heard of (The Psychedelic Furs).

The most unfortunate thing about this release is that it opens with what is by far the worst track on the release. "It's The Minor Chords That Kill You" is obviously some grab at radio play or something else, but it was so off-putting that I barely made it through the rest of the release, and that would have been unfortunate. The aforementioned tracks is all pop-culture references (including Finding Nemo) and screaming guitars that lead into obvious choruses with horrible vocals and over-compressed production.

From there, things settle down nicely and actually work pretty well. "Manhattan Chase" is a low-key track that mixes quiet keyboard melodies and guitars before swirling into a nice crescendo while "The Sound Of Your Name" mixes in some horns alongside the keyboards and guitars for a warm touch while breathy vocals kick you back into OMD land. "Parallel Lines" arrives as the best track on the release, mixing gorgeous vocal harmonies with piano and minimal guitars for a building track that sounds literally like it was made 20 years ago (in a good way). Ending in a completely different place than they started, the group takes things down a couple more notches with the catchy janglepop of "Startling Revelations." Listening to the release, I just have to wonder what the group was thinking with the sequencing. The 6 song EP gets much better as it goes on and the utterly horrible first track nearly wrecks the entire thing. If you're a big Psychedelic Furs (or even the Lightning Seeds or the aforementioned OMD) fan, you might want to check this out, just remember what that program button is for...

Rating: 5.75