FAKE OR REAL?
ALBUM STARBOY, BMG RELEASE: APRIL 3, 2000 REVIEW: MARCH 30, 2000
I can't recall my exact "Spy Hunter" high-score. But I know I played it day and night when I, after some diplomatic persuasion, got my Commodore 64 back in the Christmas of 1984 or so. An all-time computer game classic, which comes back to mind when Robot returns from times of silence, with yet another instruction manual to the making of music, resembling nothing else.
"Fake or Real?", originally titled "Love Bazaar", is the labour of the summer of 1999 and I can almost hear them jumping around in the grass of a sun drenched park, having the time of their lives. The joy, the perky moods of the album makes me want to be there with them, drinking lemonade as the sun sets in the cool summer night. Just the fact that "Fake or Real?" is slightly better than their critically acclaimed debut "Automagic" is, in itself, nothing short of spectacular.
I can spot a difference in the foundation of the music, however, now based more on electronics with other instruments spicing it, while "Automagic" was the other way around. Either way, they have an unerring feeling for catchy pop tunes, and they just might have found the golden path that will appeal to both worlds. Both pop and synthpop connoisseurs.
The use of the relatively new synth "Sidstation" makes "Fake or Real?" into one of the most emotional retro trips of my life, I can identify many, if not all, of the sounds from classics in the field of computer game childhood. The C-64 sounds are beautifully incorporated in webs of guitar, bass, synths and clever lyrics. This provides you with hope of further musical development, as all the tracks contain addictive, thought yet now fully evolved, ingredients.
And though Robot is not another stagnated retro band, they still made me want to pay a visit to the attic to blow the dust of my old machine, complete with cartridge and a 5,25" disc-drive.