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From the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

Penthouse And Pavement

Heaven 17

1981

Penthouse And Pavement

Album Summary

Penthouse and Pavement is the debut studio album by English synth-pop band Heaven 17. It was originally released in September 1981, on the label Virgin. "(We Don't Need This) Fascist Groove Thang" was released as a single, but did not achieve chart success, partly due to a ban by the BBC. The album sold reasonably well, but was not a great commercial success on release. It has since been regarded as "an important outing", is included in the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die, and was re-released in 2010 in a three-disc special edition. The title track was included on the soundtrack of the 1993 erotic thriller film Sliver.

Wikipedia

Rating

2.63

Votes

4553

Genres

  • Rock
  • Pop
  • New Wave
Reviews
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View Author
Thu Dec 23 2021
3

Oh this one was enjoyable if a little weird. Lyrics fit oddly well for the COVID era. Fave track: (We Don't Need This) Fascist Groove Thang. Should have been the theme song for Trump's presidency.

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Wed May 19 2021
1

Favourite songs- Penthouse and Pavement, Play to Win, Song with no Name I'm not a big fan of synthpop but I feel there's a lot of better synthpop out there than this. Some songs feel almost annoying and immature on this album. Synthpop is also something that needs to be really well produced for me to enjoy it, and I think the production here was not amazing. Also, you look at a synthpop band like Kraftwerk, which were so ahead of the curve that you have to respect their inventiveness, but this is a record from a time where tonnes of bands were making stuff like this, so it doesn't even seem terribly original to me. Not a bad album, certainly not my style, but I would argue that this is not an essential album. On the first track, [We Don't Need This] Fascist Groove Thang, the verse has some cool melodic ideas, but then it descends into this really repetitive chorus, that infiltrates your ear in an unpleasant way. Also the percussion is some of the most annoying stuff I've ever listened to. Next comes the title track. It starts off with a cool riff played on a synth, but it almost sounds like a horn. The percussion here sounds a bit better. There's obviously another vocalist on this track too. The melodies are cool here too, catchy, but in a fun way. I'm not a huge funk fan either, but this was an enjoyable track, though it did not need to be almost seven minutes long, as there are a lot of parts where I feel a bit of a lull. Still a great song though. Play to Win is okay, not an amazing song, but it's got some nice moments. It was one of the shorter tracks on the record, which I appreciated, as a lot of songs were really stretched out. This was the perfect length. Again, some really repetitive motifs that got kind of annoying, but this was okay. Next on the record is Soul Warfare. I'm not really a fan of this song at all. The piano sounds really pitchy and kind of like a toddler's just playing at random points. Then the hook (which is a pretty appalling hook. Seriously, write a better chorus) sounds really pitchy again, and it bothers me a lot. Another overlong song. Geisha Boys and Temple Girls is fine, until you get to the chorus. It's so nursery rhyme-ish that it puts me off the whole song, which is a shame because I was enjoying the verse. The laser sound effects do really annoy me as well. Let's All Make a Bomb might be the most annoying song on the record. From the farting synths to the weird melody, this song just sucks. The Height of the Fighting just repeats, over and over and over and over... then the verse is really strange. I'm sure it was a big political statement at the time and stuff, but the song just isn't enjoyable to me. Song With No Name is kind of dark in an interesting way. I can see why someone would enjoy this, and it's not bad at all. Got some weird moments, but definitely a highlight of the record. The last song, We're Going To Live For A Very Long Time, is another very childish song. Super repetitive and annoying. Not a fan at all. So yeah, I wasn't a huge fan of this record, but I do see how some people would really like it if they were into this style of music. It's just not to my taste.

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Tue Oct 20 2020
1

Synthpop. Dammit. The worst thing to come out of the 80s. It's blippy-bloopy, arpegiated, slam-drum crap with Devo-esque non-singing vocals. Also, there are random saxophone solos inserted for some reason. I hate everything about this genre. In the interest of fairness, there ARE some pretty groovy guitar and bass tracks on this album that are not typical of the genre. They're just buried underneath so many layers of blippy-bloop that they lose their grooviness. Even throwing it that bone, this album is awful and gets one star.

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Fri Nov 12 2021
1

Its got groove. But somehow it feels very small, the sounds feel very small, and the vocals seem very of. This is pretty bad. 2/5 The further I progress, the further this uninterests me. Nothing happens. 1/5 It's like a parody. "Decline Of The West" is pretty good, but it's not on the original album, so I wont consider it in this context. But I will include it on my playlist instead of any of the other songs lol.

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Mon Mar 28 2022
5

the lyrics are amazing. very interesting album to listen to. definitely gives a unique perspective to the time period. track 10 has serious thundercat vibes. i feel like i have been looking for this album since 2016.

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Wed Oct 27 2021
4

Maybe a little generous but I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this. Fascist Groove Thang is great and although it lost me around tracks 3-4, the likes of Let's All Make A Bomb and The Height of the Fighting hooked me back in. It's very 80s in some ways but also still manages to sound futuristic to me.

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Wed Dec 08 2021
4

This kind of early new wave/synthpop can be hit or miss due to it being so raw compared to what most people are familiar with, but I really enjoyed this album!

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Fri Apr 02 2021
2

It's OK as pure background music, but can't see it as anything else. The lyrics seem somewhat interesting, but I mostly didn't pay much attention.

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Wed Jun 30 2021
2

Heaven 17 experiment with 80's synth pop in an effort that almost feels like a summation of the musical movement. Unfortunately, they fail to capture any of the pop magic of other contemporaries when it comes to catchy ear worms.

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Thu May 06 2021
2

meh songwriting

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Fri May 14 2021
2

Not really an electronic person. Not surprised I didn't really enjoy it.

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Fri Aug 20 2021
2

Penthouse and the Pavement has some sick bass playing throughout, but the title track has a standout bassline. The sound has perhaps not aged as gracefully and I find the songwriting a bit hit or miss.

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Wed Sep 29 2021
2

Quite odd.. Spotify wouldn’t let me listen to half the album. Otherwise very short

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Wed Jul 28 2021
1

Shallow and Pedantic. Bass player is fantastic. But everything else is pretty elementary. Seriously, I'm struggling to not turn this off. It's like that guy in school who thinks he's a good song writer and keeps trying to share his demo but it's god fucking awful. And he gets a record deal, which is stunning until you find out his dad owns the label.

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Sun Oct 24 2021
1

Some albums age well, while others remain rooted in the time that they were made. Heaven 17 may well have been significant pioneers of synth-pop, leading the New Wave revolution in the early 80s, but this album is a difficult listen now. Over-pleased with the new technology that enables unnecessarily complex musical patterns, the attempt to be edgy with sixth-form political potshots is simply lost in the mix. How this ends up in any list of great albums is a mystery to me.

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Thu Jan 28 2021
5

I have never heard of this band or album but it's great. 1981 is an interesting year in music and film and this album isn't an exception.

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Mon Mar 28 2022
5

Very lovely stuff. Funky vibes mixed with electronic. Overall i liked all trakcs but the ones that stood out: Bassy play in "Groove Thang" was epic good. Fully instrumental goodness "Declines Of The West"

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Wed May 04 2022
5

10/10 LOVED IT. So very classy and every song sounded too interesting. Favorite was probably let’s all make a bomb

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Fri Sep 02 2022
5

$/& sauced

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Wed Nov 09 2022
5

Despite growing up in the 80s, I haven't listened to a lot of Heaven 17 before. The album cover had me ready to like this album, and like it I did. I love this synth-driven, pop extravaganza. It addresses some pretty interesting topics (I enjoyed "(We Don't Need This) Fascist Groove Thang" as I placed my ballot into the collection box today). Some days the relative simplicity of a lot of the songs might not have appealed as much to me, but it was perfect today!

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Wed Nov 09 2022
5

This is a fine, fine example of early 80s British synth-pop, which is a genre I strongly connected to in my adolescence. Not that I knew this album, but I wish I had. It also gets points for the politics of the time. Coming today, on the U.S. election day, "(We Don't Need This) Fascist Groove Thang" helped me emotionally cope with a terrifying day. Maybe I can get through this with a defiant dance beat! Is it perfect? No. But it speaks to me and it made me happy today. And it has a perfect cover.

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Thu Nov 26 2020
4

Nice synth pop release

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Mon Feb 08 2021
4

I had first heard of Heaven 17 through LCD Soundsystem's cover of "(We Don't Need This) Fascist Groove Thang", but I had only heard their original and nothing else. I might be just be an easy mark for the exact combo of early 80s new wave/synthpop, but this was a fun surprise of an album for me. Probably just as easily cheesy and dated of its time if you're not a fan of the exact reference points. "Fascist Groove Thang" was what had attracted my initial attention, but the title track is also a banger

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Wed Mar 24 2021
4

BARNSTORMIN. WE DONT NEED THAT FACIST GROOVE THANG! solid electropop sound. lots of intense slap bass. Song With No Name is definitely weird. it gets weirder and weirder the longer it goes.

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Thu Jan 28 2021
4

It was a ripping day for GME, so listening to this 80s-casino-cocaine on trays by babes in roller skates-style music was hitting just RIGHT. Got a little weird towards the end but I wasn't paying attention. I would revisit though!

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Sun Feb 07 2021
4

An innovative album which improves with every listening.

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Fri Jun 11 2021
4

80s is very 80s

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Fri Jun 11 2021
4

Het eerste nummer voorspelde voor mij niet veel goeds, maar erna werd de muziek iets toegankelijker, en vond ik het nog best goeie nummers

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Fri Jun 11 2021
4

Better than I expected. Funky bass lines/british 80s electronic music

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Wed Jun 02 2021
4

Extended version has some good songs would probably rate it possibly higher if they were on the original 9 track album. 2 former human league members and very of its time but would listen to it again so a good 4. The music and the lyrics are both fun with something to say.

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Wed Oct 06 2021
4

Неплохо, но местами прям не нравится

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Thu Dec 23 2021
4

Very fun, super dancey.

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Thu Jan 27 2022
4

An odd/fun album in the best possible way.

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Sun Jan 30 2022
4

You may know Human League for their synthpop masterpiece Dare. Well, just a couple years earlier their music was more avant-garde, like if postpunk went complete synths and pop. Moving in a more commercial direction, founding members Ware and Marsh broke off to form Heaven 17 to continue their more abstract sound, giving us this excellent entry. Lyrics are incredibly left-wing, reminds me of Gang of Four, to the point where they outright call Reagan and Thatcher starting fascist regimes in the first track. "Let's All Make a Bomb" is a celebratory mood to bring about the end of the world. Although not revolutionary, it's a fresh relief to hear unique subject matter in such an upbeat manner. The first half is all high-energy dance tracks, littered with repetitive catchy choruses and addictive beats. Clearly inspired by American disco, this is most evident in "Soul Warfare" with the signature guitar chords. Second half shifts to "electric" dark wave, still maintaining that groove off the first half, but much mellower and atmospheric. I love it all, this is exactly my preferred genre of pop music, danceable with highly varied synth tracks not afraid to get weird.

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Fri Feb 11 2022
4

banger - so much excellent groovy bass happening. quite odd as a concept, but enjoyed the listen

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Sun Feb 27 2022
4

02/26/2022 Fun synthpop from a band I’ve never heard of. Only half the album is available on Spotify, which was a bummer. But of those that I was able to listen to, they were tons of fun!

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Fri Mar 04 2022
4

Excellent bass. Very 80s

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Sun Mar 27 2022
4

Snaps

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Sun Mar 27 2022
4

Slaps

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Fri Apr 08 2022
4

Better than I remembered from when I owned this a long time past. Odd to think this was radio-friendly pop music 40 years ago!

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Fri Apr 15 2022
4

Wow. How. Interesting. 80s synth pop with very weird yet deeply topical lyrics. And some deftly executed experimental moments that make this record worthwhile musicaly speaking, too. Someone in this group pointed out with a snarl how the first track could have been used for Trump's campaign (I had not realized this song was the one covered by LCD Soundsystem, too). What more can i say? And what a great, sardonic artwork, to boot. I thought only Devo could pull off weird stuff like this. I was wrong. Thanks Dimery and co. Number of albums left to review or just listen to: more than 900, I've temporarily lost count here Number of albums from the list I find relevant enough to be mandatory listens: approximately a half so far (including this one) Albums from the list I *might* include in mine later on: a quarter Albums from the list I will certainly *not* include in mine (many others are more important): the last quarter

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Wed May 04 2022
4

"(We Don't Need This) Fascist Groove Thang" is very catchy with the super speedy back beat and has a super cool bass jam in the middle -First couple tracks were pretty strong, back half wasn't as good. Whole thing gave me Talking Heads and David Bowie vibes

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Thu May 05 2022
4

Provocation: this has aged much better than Dare. Just saying.

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Mon Jun 06 2022
4

Rating: 7/10

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Thu Jun 23 2022
4

Kinda funky vibe, but in a way that was pretty good I think

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Thu Jul 07 2022
4

I loved the first track “(We Don’t Need This) Fascist Groove Thang.” This album is overall pretty cool, though I can see how some might get bored after hearing repetitive tunes in some songs.

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Fri Aug 05 2022
4

8/10. Cool album, it usually annoys me when Spotify only has the extended version of the album, but in this case I was left wanting more at the end of the album's run time so it was okay.

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Fri Sep 02 2022
4

4.5

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Thu Sep 22 2022
4

Not much to say, aside from the fact that I like wobbly, nervy synth pop from this period very much. I only knew 'Temptation' prior to giving this a listen, fool that I am. There's a strain of peculiarly English glumness that runs through this otherwise twinkly offering that I find most appealing. Aside from the music, that's an all-timer of an album cover. Answering phones! Making deals! Getting paid! Truly, the most Thatcherite of new wave sleeve art imaginable, and I love it.

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Fri Sep 30 2022
4

I like the sound of this album a lot. Not every song did something I liked, but it was still interesting to hear. The themes in this album were definitely interesting. My favourite song was Play to Win.

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Wed Nov 09 2022
4

The kind of 80s brit pop that I tolerate more than enjoy, this one had me bopping along pretty good.

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Thu Nov 10 2022
4

Never heard of this before. I see new wave and think ew no I will not enjoy, then I see synth pop and my interest is back... the first song seems like it could be stressful but then I am actually really enjoying it. It's juicy 80s synth goodness and I like the message. I see radio 1 banned this debut single/opening track for fears it libelled Reagan haha I love that. Also really like the title track, really funky. Ok I officially love this album it's super fun. Groove Thang is great, also Soul Warfare and Geisha Boys and Temple Girls were highlights too. Glad I've been introduced to Heaven 17 now.

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Wed Nov 16 2022
4

funky

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Sun Nov 20 2022
4

Left wing lyrics over industrial electronic dance music is a proper mood and Heaven 17 deliver an ambitious and unusual album. Ahead of its time in many ways and an admirable record.

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Thu Sep 24 2020
3

Good!

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Wed Oct 07 2020
3

I liked this album more than I thought I would like for a pop 80's band. could see myself putting this on as peppy cleaning the house music

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Fri Feb 05 2021
3

Faktisk ret fedt. Meget elektronisk og produktionen er heller ikke helt i top

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Fri Jan 29 2021
3

1981 art pop? experimental pop? new wave? odd and i enjoy it.

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Thu Mar 18 2021
3

liked some, didn't like others. Some good grove and swing electro

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Fri Jan 22 2021
3

It was not bad

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Fri May 28 2021
3

classic 80's new wave sound. The lyrics of the song are definitely polarizing and fun.

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Mon Mar 29 2021
3

It’s strange but I didn’t dislike it.

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Fri Feb 26 2021
3

Ehh

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Thu Jan 28 2021
3

This should be on the radio in GTA Vice City. I have a soft spot for this kind of music. I like that there's a consistent theme throughout the album. Lots of lyrics about the daily grind, rat race, etc. I was going to say it sounds like The Human League and it ends up there's some overlap there. This is the first band on this project that I haven't heard of.

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Wed Feb 03 2021
3

The most 80s 80s album I've heard so far. So much funky synth.

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Wed Feb 03 2021
3

We don't need this Fascist Groove Thang?????

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Thu Jan 28 2021
3

Best album cover yet.

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Thu Jan 28 2021
3

The album art got me pumped straight away, all this stonk talk recently. I enjoyed getting some '80s electronic. There is a lot to take in on this album too. I'd like to come back to understand their message a bit better.

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Wed Feb 17 2021
3

strange pre punk pop

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Fri Feb 05 2021
3

meh - so 80s. I like devo much better than this...nothing special to me here...

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Mon Apr 05 2021
3

This band has the energy and charisma of Kraftwerk but the 80s stylings of the human league. It's not fun enough. Fascist groove thing is the best I've heard on here. What they need is a better director... producer... something. It sounds like it isn't quite done. The bass is really good and the lyrics and sound can work. It just needs a bigger 80s sound like the synth in animotion's "obsession." It fits right along with 80s new wave fun, but will never be the first band anyone remembers.

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Wed Jul 07 2021
3

I like this album.

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Mon May 31 2021
3

Talking heads + Kraftwerk = meh. At least some tracks have funky baselines.

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Thu Jun 10 2021
3

This was alright despite my only being able to hear it with one ear. Hope to find out what stereo sounds like soon. But the title track was super fun, and the lyrics of the first song were good. History does indeed repeat itself and these yuppies - I think they are plotting something. Donald must be keeping an eye on them? The cover art is iconic. That being said, most of the songs were a bit bland and unmemorable albeit harmless, well, to my right ear at least.

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Fri May 28 2021
3

A pretty good listen not what I expected. I was expecting an ABC / Spandau Ballet sound...syrupy pop but I got some interesting, sometimes edgy music more along the lines of OMD. Not bad at all. 3.5 stars

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Wed Jun 02 2021
3

Some absolute bangers here and 80’s synth pop is my guilty pleasure. In some of the tracks the bassist either has titanium fingers or has been left with two arms like Aron Ralston after recording this record. This album started off brilliantly but dropped off in the second half. You can see where the B side kicks in on what would have been the vinyl release. I was genuinely excited to give this a 4 but it didn’t hold out to completion and I kind of got bored.

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Mon Aug 09 2021
3

Classic new wave from a classic new wave band. A very distinctive sound.

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Wed Aug 11 2021
3

Another unexpected gem. If you told me this was from the mid 00’s I would have said “obviously, when else could this have happened?”

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Sun Sep 19 2021
3

3 stars. Not bad but I’m not all about the 80s synth sound

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Sat Sep 25 2021
3

early 80s industrial rock mixed with funky bass, political and on point 3.5

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Thu Oct 14 2021
3

I can appreciate the group leaning fully into these off-the-wall synth textures and arrangements even if things tend to get a bit repetitive here and there.

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Sun Oct 24 2021
3

I would call it synth-pop, but I don’t even sure how to categorize their sound properly.I guess they were something special for maybe one year. No offence, just not one of 1001 albums that are a must hear (5/10) FT: Fascist Groove Thang

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Mon Oct 25 2021
3

Well, this is an awkward album to review since like half of it isn't available on Spotify. I could switch over to youtube, but I'm not particularly motivated. The first track is some decent dance punk, kind of feels like something LCD Soundsystem would do three decades later... but after that it feels pretty dated. There's one track from the second half that is on Spotify that feels somehow dated and ahead of its time simultaneously.

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Fri Nov 12 2021
3

interesting album going from synth rb to just synth pop with some unusual political lyrics that are very obvious but not annoying

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Fri Nov 26 2021
3

Pop electrónico con sintetizadores. Un poco largo el disco, se me ha hecho un tanto de bola, pero bueno, ni fu ni fa.

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Wed Dec 08 2021
3

Not bad. Spotify was missing a lot of the songs.

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Fri Dec 10 2021
3

I dig this. Heaven 17 is a band I never recognize the name for somehow but of course know their hits. I'll tell ya, that album art is somethin' else and I wasn't sure what to expect just from that.

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Fri Dec 10 2021
3

Cet album fort peu interessant ne présente non plus aucune caractéristique le rendant reconnaissable, je n'ai par conséquent aucun angle de review. Je suis en revanche l'heureux propriétaire d'un billet pour le concert de My Chemical Romance a Munich, le 6 juin 2022, auquel il semblerait que je doive me rendre seul n'ayant aucun ami appréciant la bonne musique. Par conséquent, si l'un d'entre vous souhaite me rejoindre à ce concert, merci de me le faire savoir sous la review de l'album Exit Planet Dust de The Chemical Brothers.

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Fri Dec 10 2021
3

Ces mecs-là font absolument n'importe quoi faites très attention à eux, ils ne plaisantent pas.

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Thu Dec 16 2021
3

Pretty average new wave synth pop.

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Thu Jan 06 2022
3

This list seems to contain albums that were quite influential at the time of their release as one of the criterion for their selection. Some of these albums are really exciting to todays ears although they do contain some redeeming qualities. Penthouse and Pavement seems like one of those choices. Reading the Wikipedia article about the album, I can surmise that it was an important release at the time and had I bought it back in '81 I might have thought of it as quite groundbreaking. Today though it does sound dated. Its interesting how some albums can come across that way and some that are decades older can still sound fresh and relevant. I did enjoyed the tongue and cheek lyrics of Fascist Groove Thing. The bass playing throughout was quite good but the album itself sound quite average. 3 stars it is!

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Thu Jan 06 2022
3

Why? Must I listen to this before I die? It is not terrible. But is it good? The album cover art is cool and shows some satire and wit - which the lyrics back up to some extent. I probably don't understand the development of synth or dance to appreciate where this album fits in its evolution. Maybe if I did, the rating would be higher. As it stands, it's just a funky sounding album that is neither overly annoying nor overly redeeming.

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Thu Jan 06 2022
3

The bassist / guitarist John Wilson is aMAZing. I will give them that... I like bits here and there, but this whole album reminds me a lot of that Friends episode where Ross pulls out his synthesizer and plays his music for everyone. It's just... very noodle-y.

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Thu Jan 06 2022
3

This was fine. 1980s British political synth-rock.

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Mon Jan 24 2022
3

boop and beep

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Wed Jan 26 2022
3

Does what its supposed to do it you want something to drown out the silence but can't say that it's anything more than that

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Sun Feb 06 2022
3

3.5/5. Twas a neat a funky synth my, nu wave. Lots of good bass. Very 80s

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Fri Feb 11 2022
3

A few good songs, but mostly filler

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Sun Feb 13 2022
3

80’s synth

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Fri Feb 18 2022
3

Didn’t give it a proper chance.

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Fri Feb 18 2022
3

Pretty fun synthpop, I liked it.

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Wed Feb 23 2022
3

Pop electrónico con sintetizadores. Un poco largo el disco, se me ha hecho un tanto de bola, pero bueno, ni fu ni fa.

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Thu Mar 03 2022
3

Very quirky. Had no idea what to expect, and certainly wasn't expecting this sort of retro-futurist electronic pop stuff. Instrumentals are all over the place, sometimes enough to make me laugh. Lyrical performances were interesting too. I liked this, even though it ran a bit long. Favorite tracks: Penthouse and Pavement, Geisha Boys and Temple Girls, The Height of the Fighting, Decline of the West. Album art: Love, love, love this. Like something ripped from an '80s HR instructional textbook. Big fan of the style and layout. 3.5/5

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Thu Mar 03 2022
3

What a fun album. Very very quirky. I feel like I have heard those voices before from some other 80's pop band. Some catchy songs but also none of them made any sense which I think added to the mystique.

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Sun Mar 20 2022
3

I liked it. The synth is obviously very dated, but the melodies are interesting. The lyrics are very politics and reflect the time during Reagan’s ascension during the Cold War and as such are pessimistic. I certainly see why this album is worth listening to, but it is so rooted in its own time that it’s hard to see its universality.

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Fri Mar 25 2022
3

Either a high 3 or a low 4 - can’t decide

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Sun Mar 27 2022
3

A nice combination of sounds: Detached ironic vocals, busy drum machine patterns, various synth textures and lively bass work being a definite highlight

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Mon Apr 04 2022
3

started off promising but then slowed. like a mix of divo and Huey lewis

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Wed Apr 13 2022
3

There's something to this but a fair portion hasn't aged well.

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Thu Apr 14 2022
3

This one was... fine. Some interesting hooks, but songs mostly went on too long or were just fine. Probably won't listen again, but I didn't actively dislike it.

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Thu Apr 14 2022
3

This was like Depeche mode, but just not as good. And I'm already but a massive depeche mode fan, bar a few songs. Prefer not to listen again, but not terrible.

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Fri Apr 15 2022
3

Middle of the road new wave. 2.5/5

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Fri Apr 22 2022
3

It's a bit difficult to review this as I was there in 1981 and bought and loved this album. So there's a lot of nostalgia and since I still love Synth this isn't going to be objective. When you've played songs many times it's difficult. It's not the best out there and the sounds never progress from the basic repetitive beat. Heaven 17 moved towards a Funky sound (beats and vocals) but the lyrics and sound are still 6th Form (is that 12th grade nowadays?). After splitting from Human League they were trying to create an image and production along the lines of Factory Records but it never really took off as essentially there are glimpses of brilliance in there but rarely does anything emerge. To be honest I think their next album The Luxury Gap is better than this but hasn't made the 1001. Some of their choices are odd.

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Wed Apr 27 2022
3

This album feels quite dated and a bit uninteresting, especially after hearing their B.E.F. sides of 6 months before this.

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Fri May 27 2022
3

Fun synth pop album. Very 80s but that is a great thing. I took of a star as along with all the amazing there a few duffers.

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Thu Jun 16 2022
3

3.5 / 5. Really good songs! Second time I've come across this one and it is growing on me!

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Thu Jun 30 2022
3

Best Song: Soul Warfare. Give me more of that bassline, please. Worst Song: Decline Of The West. There is a jangly little audio snippet in here that sounds like a compression fragment... I don't know what it is trying to be but it sounds awful and is used liberally. Overall: Really weird album. What started as an interesting, disco-inspired groovy pop thing suddenly took a radical turn at the end, turning into a (failed, in my opinion) attempt at industrial music. The result feels very fractured, but highlights were sufficiently interesting that I could see myself returning.

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Wed Jul 06 2022
3

This is English synth-pop band Heaven 17's debut album. At release it did not sell much, but the sales grew over time so it eventually was certified gold in the UK. The first single "(We Don't Need This) Fascist Groove Thang" was banned by the BBC, which potentially caused the lull in sales at release. However, the album remained in the Top 100 for 77 weeks so it was still popular. The music was good as a result of the electropop melodies and non-pretentious political lyrics. I can appreciate a good synth-pop album, but none of the tracks stuck out to me as overly amazing so I can't rate this too highly.

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Thu Jul 07 2022
3

Disco lite. Somehow harder to listen to than regular disco.... Not terrible. Not going to go on my playlist any time soon

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Mon Jul 18 2022
3

Strong 3

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Thu Aug 25 2022
3

that's one of my favourite album covers i've seen in a long time. the music is a lovely dichotomy of the 80s with some of it being amazing fun times yuppie good and some of it being toxteth riots terrible noises.

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Fri Aug 26 2022
3

Not my style. But really glad I listened to it.

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Sun Aug 28 2022
3

Too weird for me, and in that manner of a lot of early synth pop, too enamored of its machine generated bleeps and bloops. I didn’t absolutely hate it but I was glad when it was done.

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Mon Aug 29 2022
3

Very playful and expermental. But inconsistent

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Mon Aug 29 2022
3

Not too bad

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Fri Sep 09 2022
3

Not bad.

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Thu Sep 22 2022
3

The cover is fantastic. I wanted a whole album of 'Let Me Go' level stuff. This wasn't it. Interesting, but nothing that made me take notice. Makes sense that this album came first. I'd leave it on in the background.

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Thu Sep 22 2022
3

Experimental synth-pop-rock-dance-whatever. Lots of sounds that would later define genres. Just kind of meh for me though.

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Fri Oct 28 2022
3

Nothing to write home about.

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Sun Oct 30 2022
3

Shout Out to the Sharon Stone vehicle Sliver, which features the title song from this album. Big Human League vibe here, which makes all the sense in the world since the bands are somewhat related in a Poco/Eagles sort of way, with some band members splitting to join the other. Turns out that…I like Heaven 17 now? Fuck it, I might just love them. Some of this is better than a lot of similar music that hit in the States at the time. This should have been big here in 1981. The lesson, as always: Nobody knows anything.

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Thu Nov 03 2022
3

Initially I was somewhat irritated, but getting into it this is actually a pretty fun record.

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Wed Nov 09 2022
3

Something just felt lacking for me on this album. I guess it was fine, but it wasn't all that memorable for me and possibly at times a bit tedious. I hadn't heard of this group nor any of the tracks, but the sound was kind of a familiar one...just not one that captivated me...

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Thu Nov 10 2022
3

It was gloriously 80's, which I was into but then got a bit bored of. Didn't get some of the lyrics

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Fri Apr 16 2021
2

Wack

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Thu Feb 25 2021
2

Basically drunken me trying my best on Fruity Loops

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Wed Mar 31 2021
2

agressive

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Wed Jun 09 2021
2

Never heard of this band before, it's not bad but I will forget about its existence soon.

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Thu Feb 25 2021
2

It's time to listen to some Heaven 17, and their 1981 album Penthouse And Pavement. It's a bit rough going to be honest. I'm all for Electro-Pop and Synth and I've enjoyed a lot of similar types of music over the years. The Trainspotting soundtrack is to this day top five soundtracks of all time for me. It features Heaven 17's most famous song I think - called 'Temptation' and its very enjoyable. I listened to it again this morning and verified the enjoyment. This album is hard to digest, and it might need another hook or two - just to keep me invested. It feels more like just beats and repeated lyrics over and over and lots of other odd noises mixed in. I'm a big fan of Kraftwerk and it's mentioned that this album feels like where Kraftwerk left off with The Man Machine. Maybe I need to give that album another listen because I'm not enjoying this as much as I did that album. I'm halfway through this album, so we'll see how the side B feels. Adding the synthesizer to pop music was an important step forward - but this band is a hard listen in 2021. I'm Your Money is hitting the spot towards the end of the album, just because the end sounds very much like Kraftwerk.

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Wed May 12 2021
2

Very funky 80's style jams. Also very strange. About half of the songs are unavailable on Spotify, but I felt like I got the gist of it. Highlights: -Penthouse and Pavement

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Mon Apr 05 2021
2

oof, this album was kind of a hard listen to, I am not a fan of synth-pop, and this album didn't change things. after reading about the band, i can see why, I was never into The Human League either, but there were some good songs on the album "Let's all make a bomb" was the best track for sure.

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Thu Jan 28 2021
2

First two songs are great but the rest is pretty mediocre. 5/10

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Mon Mar 29 2021
2

Znowu po brytyjsko, ponownie lata 80, ale tym razem w klimacie synth popowym, dosc dlugie sluchanie, bo wersja spotifajowa zawiera wszelakie single wydawane na roznych nosnikach. wiec z orginalnego 38 minutowego materialu zrobilo sie z bonusami godzina 22 minuty, wiec mocarna dawka densingowych rytmow, bo wlasnie tak grany jest ten synth pop, disko nowej fali lat 80 wyspiarzow, jesli juz smithy uzywaly wstawek synthowych tworzac swoje popowania, to tak tutaj calosc jest oparta na syntezatorach, ale ciekawe motywy liryczne sie przewijaja na plycie, bo jest dosc duzo ironizowania, wiec taki punkowy pop, poprawnosc polityczna nie jest synonimem tego materialu, bo jeden z kawalkow byl nawet zbanowany w mainstreamowych mediach ze wzgledu na swoje anty thatcherowo murikanskie przeslanie, a tytul tego traka to (we dont need this) fascist groove thang, ktory leci na plejke razem z soul warfare

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Wed Apr 21 2021
2

Background noise

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Thu Jan 28 2021
2

Fuckin 80s man

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Sun Mar 14 2021
2

It was ok.

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Thu Jan 28 2021
2

I am sure it was cutting edge in 1981 but it sounds very dated in 2021. It is a tremendous effort considering the group's youth and limited production available. However, it is not my cup of tea.

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Sun May 23 2021
2

.

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Fri Jun 11 2021
2

Laat me redelijk koud.

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Sun Mar 21 2021
2

Funk pop electrónico, con sintes ochenteros. Hiperproducido, entre la New Wave y los Nuevos Románticos.

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Wed Jun 30 2021
2

out at the slap bass

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Fri May 14 2021
2

80 is wank

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Thu Oct 07 2021
2

Old pop

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Wed Oct 13 2021
2

A band and album completely foreign to me. The only thing I recognized was the opening song, "(We Don't Need This) Fascist Groove Thang", covered by LCD Soundsystem on a live album. Pretty good. Obviously, the whole album is a satire of sorts intended to dunk on yuppie corporate life. But I'll be frank, this is pretty shallow, musically. Some of it is catchy, sure, but I'm sitting here listening to some fart-y synths and can't help but feel like this album needs some "punching up", so to speak. Bass groves are, more often than not, holding this shit together. I love the idea of this album, but the songs just don't deliver.

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Wed Oct 27 2021
2

Some great bass. An album I can enjoy but will probably never listen to again.

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Wed Oct 27 2021
2

There's quite a few things I enjoyed about this album, but it faded quite badly after a strong start. They really have perfected the art of matching the melody and lead synth lines and singing them over and over and over

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Wed Nov 10 2021
2

I cant believe I made my ears listen to this shit. He-La_Whooo

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Fri Dec 10 2021
2

Meh. Forgettable

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Thu Dec 16 2021
2

nä, det här höll inte tyckte jag, inte min påse puka.

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Mon Dec 20 2021
2

Enjoyable.

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Mon Jan 10 2022
2

2 1/2

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Thu Jan 20 2022
2

C’est weird, un peu electro, synth j’ai pas deteste . Mais c’est pas fou 2.95

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Mon Jan 24 2022
2

i kinda find this very mid, i don't hate it and i thought it'd be something i would like but unfortunately i find the production to be very poor and the actual music to be both cold and in a position where it does absolutely nothing for me

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Mon Jan 24 2022
2

Tecno pop

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Wed Jan 26 2022
2

The Human League was enough of a waste of time to include another synth-pop side project of theirs.

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Fri Feb 18 2022
2

Part new wave and parts power pop this really didn’t hit me in any particular way I cared for enough to sink more time into the band.

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Wed Feb 23 2022
2

No están mal, pero un poco cansinos. Cantan a destiempo. Electronic punk ?¿

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Wed Mar 09 2022
2

I don’t know if I’m edgy enough to be in this party :(

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Mon Mar 14 2022
2

Not for me this!

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Thu Mar 17 2022
2

I love the 80s music wise but this was just painful

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Thu May 19 2022
2

No fascist groove thing is catchy and fun, leaning into the title. But even with that and after it just really isn't my thing.

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Thu May 19 2022
2

List fail. Rhythm section was OK.

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Thu May 19 2022
2

Brit Devo

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Sun May 22 2022
2

Eh, wasn't really my cup of tea.

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Mon May 23 2022
2

Its experimental which is good. But also Meh, which isnt

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Wed May 25 2022
2

I was given Duran Duran's Rio a few albums ago and I thoroughly enjoyed that trip back to the 80's. So when I saw this come up I was happy to dive back in. Also, for context, I gave Kraftwerk Autobahn 5 stars. So this album sounds just like something I would enjoy, but oof. I certainly see what they are trying to do but it's too simplistic and aimless to get there. Even the short songs feel too long. The bassist really goes for it which merits a star. Otherwise, it's a listless mess that I actually didn't need to hear before I die.

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Mon Jun 06 2022
2

2, had its moments

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Thu Jun 09 2022
2

They had a vision for what they wanted, and they went for it; I'll give them that. When I think synth-pop, I definitely don't think about socially conscious bands that are looking to make commentaries with their music. The lyrical content makes the focus of this album plain, but the conspicuously artificial sound of the synthesized drum tracks and keyboards add an additional dystopian and ominous air to most of the tracks. The result is an album that isn't necessarily entertaining, or rather that feels less casual and more forceful with it's desire to be heard. I appreciate a group that is willing to do that, but I also have to admit that in this case, it kind of undermines my ability to enjoy it too much.

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Thu Jul 07 2022
2

It’s not bad, but as at the time, it just made me want to listen to the Human League albums that were out at the same time or before this. They were ok, but others did it better. As an aside, when they were younger lead singer Glenn Gregory reminded me of Gary Busey.

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Thu Jul 14 2022
2

There was some cool funk moments underneath, but overshadowing it a bit was that cheesy 80s synth pop that does sound quite dated. I think I’ve enjoyed some synth pop, but this one didn’t quite do it for me. I can see the appeal though

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Mon Aug 01 2022
2

very 80s

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Thu Aug 04 2022
2

Kinda bland and forgettable, not offensive but hardly a defining album

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Thu Aug 25 2022
2

I never was a fan of synth-pop, not then and still now. Most of it was listenable, but it reminded me that there was a lot of music in the early-80's that I disliked and this would have been one of those albums that confirmed that. Not the least bit essential, at least for me.

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Thu Aug 25 2022
2

Hopeless bunch of preening synth-poppers create a swirling vortex of ennui.

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Thu Aug 25 2022
2

I was due to record 'An Audience with Nigel Spackman' for the BBC back in the early 90s. I overslept and was late setting off for the recording, meaning I hit rush hour traffic. Feeling hungry, I decided to grab a large cheese burger from a vendor on the corner of a road. I wolfed it down in seconds. Moments later, I felt my stomach begin to twinge. Soon, thunderous belches and farts oozed out of me. I was in trouble. I was in a race against the clock, but also about to burst with a volcano of shit. I decided it was best to just get to the venue and unleash hell in my dressing room. As I pulled up, people were already filtering in and some keen autograph hunters spotted me arriving. I found a dark corner of the carpark and decided I couldn't wait any longer. I had to get this shit out. I moved onto the back seat of the car behind the driver's seat, pulled down my pants and curled out unimaginable darkness into an old shoebox I had previously discarded. What a relief. That was until someone tapped on the window of my car. I turned to see a group of around 30 Nigel Spackman fans staring in horror at what they had just seen. I opened the door, posed for some photos and gave the shoebox to a young boy as a souvenir. I smashed the gig and went home triumphantly. This Heaven 17 record reminds me of that evening.

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Wed Sep 07 2022
2

Sparkes did it first and better

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Wed Sep 28 2022
2

A pretty weird and overall underwhelming 80s pop style album. The album felt a bit long and some songs dragged on due to their repetitive lyrics. I didn’t find this one to be very interesting or that important. It was an okay album but would not be revisited. 4.2/10

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Fri Sep 30 2022
2

The album started really strong but fell down fast. Most of the songs are way too repetitive and long with OK production, but the concept/ideas are interesting. Still, didn’t exactly hate the rest of the album, most of it was just mediocre. This is the type of album where you save the first couple songs and never listen to the rest again (which is an hour and a half!)

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Thu Oct 06 2022
2

it's not great. patchy at best and the best patches aren't patches i'd want to listen to again

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Fri Oct 21 2022
2

Decent

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Mon Oct 31 2022
2

Very forgettable synth-pop.

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Thu Nov 03 2022
2

I am trying to understand this album's inclusion this list. It feels like an album that one of the list makers really liked and decided to put it on. If you look at the Wikipedia it's basically like "yeah this album wasn't well received but some people have liked it more over the years." If I were to make a list of my 100 favorite albums, there would be a ton of niche picks on there that absolutely not every person needs to listen to unless they really like the genre or something. This feels like one of those album's. For starters, it's repetitive as hell. The lyrics in most songs just repeat and repeat and repeat "for a very long time." Secondly, aside from a few moments, the synthpop sound isn't even that noteworthy or interesting. I did really like the groove on the title track, but it didn't need to go on for almost seven minutes. And, "Soul Warfare" was a pretty repetitive, boring song until the totally ripping bass solo. Other tracks were downright obnoxious to listen to: "Geisha Boys and Temple Girls" and "The Height of Fighting " to name a couple. It's not necessarily a bad album, but it's not good either.

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Thu Nov 10 2022
2

Started off quite nice and I thought it would be good but I got quickly bored

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Thu Nov 10 2022
2

This did not speak to me at all. It was a style typically I would like but I just found it irritating

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Thu Nov 10 2022
2

I love some songs by Heaven17 unfortunately none are on this album. Quite weird songs on here

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Fri Nov 18 2022
2

When your mind merges Heavens to Betsy and Excuse 17 into Heaven 17 you are abruptly shocked by this record more than you deserve to be. It says something about how expectations shapes our response to what we perceive. Now to get down to my experience of this record after the initial shock. It reminds me of a cross between Depeche Mode and Gang of Four. Quite possibly this record is the average of those two bands. That's another way of saying when I hear this, it reminds me to listen to records I like better.

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Fri Nov 18 2022
2

Synth-pop is just not my thing. There are some cool moments on here, especially the funky bass lines. I don’t think this has aged well.

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Fri Sep 18 2020
1

This was disgustingly 80's. Yuck!

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Fri May 07 2021
1

no

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Mon Feb 22 2021
1

No famaliar songs. Not realy a nice album to me.

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Thu Jan 21 2021
1

My god, horrible

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