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To My Boy - Messages

To My Boy, on their debut long-player, ‘Messages’, prove that there’s more to trendy fun music than six strings and a high street-approved fringe.

It’s always nice to hear something new. After all, there are a lot of those awful guitar-based bands around. Only joking. Anyway, To My Boy, on their debut long-player, ‘Messages’, prove that there’s more to trendy fun music than six strings and a high street-approved fringe. This Liverpool and Chesterfield-based duo show that, with a bit of imagination and a few fairly-priced gadgets, it is possible to make something incredibly innovative out of something that would normally sound rather dull.

Jerking around like Devo at a roller disco, album opener ‘Tell Me, Computer’ promises the future of pop music in a jovial, tongue-in-cheek delivery. There’s life on his disc, and ‘Messages’ is certainly different in that respect. The faux-olympic ‘EUREKA’ smacks of any children-oriented science programme circa ten years ago, whereas ‘Outerregions’ owes more than a passing gesture to the theme tune from The Adam & Joe Show.

Recent single ‘Model’ grinds its way into amiable radio-friendliness, like Sparks getting down with Kraftwerk on an office night out to see what the kids are getting upto these days. It’s mathematic, precise and some may argue that this debut is simply songwriting-by-numbers, packaged with uncomplicated electronics in place of mindless guitar noodlings.

Elsewhere, ‘Messages’ appears to amble with less focus. Although early releases ‘i am xRAY’ and ‘The Grid’ are tuneful and hold proceedings together admirably, the limitations found when navigating lo-fi instruments have emerged unavoidably here - it’s all too easy to say that everything sounds samey. It doesn’t, of course, and it’s refreshing to see such a take on electronic music not witnessed at this level for a while. At least To My Boy won’t have to go back to the drawing board. They’ve got computers for those kinds of things nowadays.

Tags: To My Boy, Reviews, Album Reviews

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