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Review: Les Modules Etranges – ‘Socially Awkward’
France’s Les Modules Etranges‘ previous album ‘Turmoil’ saw the band with a lot to prove and without question it did it most successfully. But this of course creates another dilemma… just how do you top an album like that? Luckily this trio are not ones to shy away from a challenge.
The bands turbulent blend of innovative coldwave and sheer punk spirit is an ever present bundle of frantic energy that impatiently drags every song kicking and screaming until completion. Kicking off with the fast paced and bouncy punk of ‘You. Me. Intercourse’ the band careers through avant-garde tinged tracks like ‘Misanthropy’, ‘The Dweller On The Threshold’ and ‘No One Is Safe’ as well as the more familiar but still innovative likes of ‘Surgery Girl’ and a great cover of Internal Anatomy’s ‘Trapped’.
The album as a whole feels a lot more playful than its predecessor and features less of the harsher elements from ‘Turmoil’ and instead plays on the band’s quick witted style to throw the listener curve-balls to keep them off balance. The heavy use of sampling from movies such as Twin Peaks, Night Of the Living Dead and American Psycho is another great tool used subtly at times to change the flow of the songs and the album as a whole.
With each release the band’s sound and execution continues to improve and ‘Socially Awkward’ is perhaps the best the band have ever sounded in terms of production and mixing as it balances the band’s use of electronics with their punk rooting. This album is another strong step and if this is the way in which Les Modules Etranges are progressing in both style and substance then then it is safe to say that best is yet to come.