Voxbox: Voxbox
Tonecard Sounds

Yaz. Depeche Mode. Lowfish. Kraftwerk. Solvent. Eurythmics. If such artists and songs like “Love is a Stranger” and “Just Can't Get Enough” constitute your vision of sonic utopia, indulge your inner android with Voxbox, Nevin Hersch's self-titled robot music debut. Conflating elements of synthpop, disco, electro, industrial, and techno into a bright hybrid that percolates throughout its almost eighty-minute running time, Hersch wears his machine influences on his sleeve, whether acknowledging them overtly in liner notes or in a cover choice like Missing Persons' “Destination Unknown.”

Though the album is grounded in the synthpop genre, the songs range widely within it, from the dark electro-industrial sound of “Emotional Abuse” and “Industria Robotica” to the buoyant futurama of “Retropolis,” chiming splendour of “Digitalover,” and epic shuffle of “Voxbots.” Enhancing the material is an occasional vocal by Janet Fleming (her voice both appealing and appropriately mannequin-like) and Hersch himself (typically vocodered or distorted) with a regrettable jones for juvenile titles (“Penis Flytrap,” “Sonic Masturbation”) about the only wrong turn he makes. Is Voxbox derivative? Definitely. Pleasurable? If you're a Robot Music fan: absolutely.

April 2006