Jun 2011 15

Cover Image
Category: Futurepop
Album: R.E.T.R.O.
Stars: 1
Blurb: Mind.in.a.Box sells 8-bit goodness, but when you open the box, all you find is cheesy techno and dated futurepop.


Austrian futurepop act Mind.in.a.Box is one of the bands that came out of the wave of the early 2000s that stemmed from the success of VNV Nation’s Empires. Their first three albums were meant to be concept records that told some epic sci-fi/fantasy story. In actuality, the albums were middle of the road, forgettable futurepop/EBM that was de rigueur of that era. But that was all to change with their latest release R.E.T.R.O. The band stated that this was to be a new direction for their sound, combining chiptune and EBM as homage to gaming systems of the past, in particular the much beloved Commodore 64. Well M.i.a.B. do go back in time for their new sound; just not as far as one would hope. Much of the CD is done in that other great fad genre of the early 2000s – Electroclash, made famous by such acts as Fischerspooner and Fairlight Children. Tracks like “8-Bits” and “I Love 64” are up-tempo, mediocre techno music that one could find playing in any downtown NYC club on a Friday night. The first three songs, “Last Ninja 3,” “Lightforce,” and “The Last V8” are covers of famous Commodore 64 games themes that, while not terrible, do little to improve upon the originals and would only really appeal to hardcore C64 fans. The rest of the album consists of fairly standard, mostly instrumental EBM with some random chiptunes slapped in it to give credence to the theme of the album. This album from start to finish is one huge disappointment. It has been trendy of late for groups to go back to earlier electro sounds and incorporate them into their music, but Mind.in.a.Box do it in such a careless and sloppy fashion that one has to wonder what they were thinking. You only have to look at albums like Kanye West’s 808 & Heartbreak or Crystal Castles’ self-titled debut to hear how more mainstream acts have done it better and with far more commercial success. One hopes that Mind.in.a.Box takes a cue from most of the futurepop acts of their era and just fades away after this record.
Track list:

  1. Last Ninja 3
  2. Lightforce
  3. The Last V8
  4. Supremacy
  5. Shades
  6. 8 Bits
  7. Mindkiller
  8. The Last Ninja
  9. I Love 64
  10. We Cannot Go Back to the Past
  11. Whatever Mattered

Mind.in.a.Box Website http://mindinabox.com
Mind.in.a.Box MySpace http://www.myspace.com/mindinabox
Mind.in.a.Box Facebook http://www.facebook.com/mindinabox.official
Mind.in.a.Box Twitter http://www.twitter.com/_mindinabox
Metropolis Records Website http://www.metropolis-records.com
Metropolis Records MySpace http://www.myspace.com/metropolisrecords
Purchase at:
Amazon CD
Amazon MP3
John Galope (SilentBKS)

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