Tuesday, February 09, 2016

John Foxx: Metamatic (1980)

Before Ultravox! (later, just Ultravox) became a vehicle for Midge Ure, the group was fronted by John Foxx. With Ure, there was a noticeable change of direction. I prefer the pre-Ure Ultravox, but that is a story for much later.

Foxx's music is synthesizer-based, electronic post-rock with a bit of punk thrown in. It's no secret that Gary Numan was heavily influenced by Foxx's music, though Gary seemed to throw a bit more melody, or maybe just more warmth, into his music. This, also, is a story for much later.

This record sports a fabulous cover image with tracks that are equally engaging, though some might think the music cold and unforgiving or perhaps just simply too robotic. For me, these are points to be placed in the plus column. This is a perfect description:

"On Metamatic, Foxx cultivates a curious air of disinterest that never seems truly bored, but is much more extreme than even his unarguably distant vocal style for Ultravox! It holds up as one of the peaks of the early-'80s fascination with emotionless, Kraftwerk-inspired synth pop."

I own the original UK pressing of this record, because it was never released in Canada on any format. How stupid are Canadian record companies? The record has a really good cover image too.

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