Title: Commodore Rock
Label: Invicta Hi Fi Records, Emperor Norton
Format: 12”, 10” CD
Genre: synth pop, techno
Oh man, I love Ladytron. That might come as a surprise to many of you, but I find their infectious blend of sleazy pop and electro to be irresistible. I think you can blame “Sexy Boy” by Air for that, as that was the first song of that type I had heard. Ladytron wasn’t too long after that. Yet, amazingly, despite my affinity for their music, this EP is the first and so far, the only thing I own from them. It features tracks and a rarity from the “604” album and was released in mid-2000.
OK, so maybe three of the four tracks appear on the album which would make a lot of people wonder why they should buy this when they’re only getting one bonus track. I suppose that’s a fair argument. However, if you’ve been a little timid about getting into this band, this would be a fair place to start. It’s an earlier release and while their later works show they’ve certainly matured, it is still a decent intro.
“Playgirl” is ultra-sweet synth pop goodness. This was actually one of the first tracks I heard from them, and it’s what got me hooked. The vintage keyboards and silky vocals are unbeatable. “Commodore RocK” carries on the show with a spoken word bit. That is something I didn’t expect from the band but am pleased to see they can pull off.
On the flip side of this vinyl lies “Miss Black.” It’s the only track that doesn’t appear on the album and it’s fairly simple. The only vocals here are an oddly uncomfortable, almost creepy sounding laugh. And lastly, we have “Paco!” By far, this is my favorite track on this disc for the simple fact that it’s a cover of the “Are You Being Served?” theme song. That really made my day when I heard this.
To sum it up, if you’re new to this band and are looking for a place to start without getting over your head, this would be the release for you. Go for it, you know you want to. If you’re already into Ladytron, only grab this if you’re a completest. I think the rare track here shows up on some expanded edition or rarity compilation anyway, so you won’t miss much if you pass it up.
4.9 out of 5.