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Junk Culture
     

Junk Culture

by Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark
 

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Smarting from Dazzle Ships' commercial failure, the band had a bit of a rethink when it came to their fifth album -- happily, the end result showed that the group was still firing on all fours. While very much a pop-oriented album and a clear retreat from the exploratory reaches of previous work, Junk Culture was no sacrifice of ideals in pursuit of cash

Overview

Smarting from Dazzle Ships' commercial failure, the band had a bit of a rethink when it came to their fifth album -- happily, the end result showed that the group was still firing on all fours. While very much a pop-oriented album and a clear retreat from the exploratory reaches of previous work, Junk Culture was no sacrifice of ideals in pursuit of cash. In comparison to the group's late-'80s work, when it seemed commercial success was all that mattered, Junk Culture exhibits all the best qualities of OMD at their most accessible -- instantly memorable melodies and McCluskey's distinct singing voice, clever but emotional lyrics, and fine playing all around. A string of winning singles didn't hurt, to be sure; indeed, opening number "Tesla Girls" is easily the group's high point when it comes to sheer sprightly pop, as perfect a tribute to obvious OMD inspirational source Sparks as any -- witty lines about science and romance wedded to a great melody (prefaced by a brilliant, hyperactive intro). "Locomotion" takes a slightly slower but equally entertaining turn, sneaking in a bit of steel drum to the appropriately chugging rhythm and letting the guest horn section take a prominent role, its sunny blasts offsetting the deceptively downcast lines McCluskey sings. Meanwhile, "Talking Loud and Clear" ends the record on a reflective note -- Cooper's intra-verse sax lines and mock harp snaking through the quiet groove of the song. As for the remainder of the album, if there are hints here and there of the less-successful late-'80s period, at other points the more adventurous side of the band steps up. The instrumental title track smoothly blends reggae rhythms with the haunting mock choirs familiar from earlier efforts, while the elegiac, Humphreys-sung "Never Turn Away" and McCluskey's "Hard Day" both make for lower-key highlights.

Product Details

Release Date:
04/12/2013
Label:
Emi Import
UPC:
0724384624521
catalogNumber:
8462452

Related Subjects

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark   Primary Artist,Track Performer
Bart Van Lier   Trombone,Saxophone,Background Vocals,Brass
Jan Faas   Trumpet,Background Vocals
Malcolm Holmes   Percussion,Drums,Electric Drums,Latin Percussion
Maureen Humphreys   Vocals
Andy McCluskey   Synthesizer,Bass,Guitar,Percussion,Keyboards,Vocals,Multi Instruments,Emulator,fairlight,Latin Percussion,Fairlight CMI
Brian Tench   Vocals,Background Vocals
Gordon Troeller   Piano,Roland Synthesizer
Jan Vennik   Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone,Background Vocals
Tony Visconti   Brass
Paul Humphreys   Synthesizer,Percussion,Piano,Celeste,Keyboards,Vocals,Multi Instruments,Emulator,Korg,fairlight,Fairlight CMI,Prophet 5,Roland Synthesizer
Martin Cooper   Synthesizer,Keyboards,Marimbas,Saxophone,Soprano Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone,Multi Instruments,Emulator,Prophet 5,Roland Synthesizer,Marimba (Electronics)

Technical Credits

Michel Dierickx   Engineer
Malcolm Holmes   Composer,drum machine,drum programming
Steve Jackson   Engineer
Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark   Producer
Ronald Prent   Engineer
Brian Tench   Producer,Engineer
Gordon Troeller   Management
Tony Visconti   Brass Arrangment
Peter Woolliscroft   Engineer
Peter Saville   Art Direction
Richard Haughton   Sleeve Design
Michel Dierivks   Engineer
Michel Diericks   Engineer
PSA   Cover Design
Susan Pippet   Management

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