Roladex – “Glass Statuette”

roladex music

When I posted Roladex’s excellent track “Anthem for the Micro-Age” in February, I fell in love with the duo’s clear adoration for vintage synth-pop, particularly the sort with nonchalant vocals, Kraftwerk-ian synths, and robotic rhythms. Parts Pet Shop Boys, parts Magnetic Fields, and part Kraut-rock/post-punk hybrids of the ’70s and ’80s,  Roladex’s sound will inspire nostalgia just as it does subtle hooks that steadily emerge as spine-chilling successes.

Their new track “Glass Statuette” is very much in line, stylistically, with “Anthem for the Micro-Age”, which makes me happy. There aren’t many current groups to my knowledge creating a sound like Roladex’s, so it still appears very fresh despite my familiarity with their past releases. After all, they create their tracks “on a museum’s worth of analog synths and drum machines”, so the distinctive-sounding result probably isn’t too much of a surprise. “Glass Statuette” rides on a calm female/male duet lead vocal delivery; the lack of vocal enthusiasm combines with the active and colorful synth arrangements to form a strikingly melodic contrast, something a fan of Stephin Merritt‘s work will appreciate, or any fan of quality synth-pop for that matter.  Subtle additions – like the increased pitch in synths around 02:40 – make for seemingly minor yet striking hooks that, in addition to the calmly infectious chorus, results in another striking success for this talented duo.

Mike Mineo

I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound, which was formed in 2006. Previously, I wrote for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine.

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