Saturday, October 17, 2009

VINYL review of MASTER Slash SLAVE
Tag Archive for 'Master Slash Slave'
Master Slash Slave – “Scandal” 12″ vinyl


on July 28, 2009

in M


The two members in Master Slash Slave must have grown up in the ’80s; that or they really, really love “Zelda.” Ushering in what can only be described as the Nintendo-core sound, the group combines programmed beats, live drumming and guitar with an array of synthesizers all heavily influenced by the “training interlude” music in “Mike Tyson’s Punch Out.” Add a Brandon Flowers-esque vocal quality to the mix and you have yourself one interesting band.

Master Slash Slave describes itself as sounding like “the White Stripes and Kraftwerk arguing with Interpol over what to wear.” While there is little doubt as to the Kraftwerk influence, the jury’s out on whether the other bands mentioned in the musical equation actually fit. The Killers and Devo arguing over who gets to score the next “Tron” soundtrack with Kraftwerk would make much more sense.

If you’re starting to get the impression that this band is a little weird, you’re right. In fact, some of the tracks on Scandal would blend in nicely with the loops found on DJ battle records.

Not all the tracks, however, sound like they could be featured in an upcoming Mix Master Mike album. With “Slummin,” the driving force of the song is no longer synthesizers but dance-tastic, double-time hi-hat action. Take away the analog vibe and the band starts to sound a bit like “Bows + Arrows”-era Walkmen. Master Slash Slave, however, wouldn’t be Master Slash Slave without some tweaking of the keyboard. Midway through the song, the band layers bright synthesizer tones over the traditional instrumentation, giving the song a futuristic “Super Mario Bros.” sound (not a castle level, though). The resulting effect gives the track a mash-up feel and goes to show that not all synth-heavy groups end up sounding like the Revenge of the Nerds band.

The duo also shows some variation on “High Heels.” Although the keyboards are still firmly in place, the only other accompaniment is an acoustic guitar and the vocals of Matt Jones. The track doesn’t really seem to flow with the rest of the album, but the song sounds good, and it’s definitely something different.

Long story short: if Capcom is looking to give the Mega Man soundtrack an indie rock edge, then Master Slash Slave is the band to do it. [By: Jake Corbin]

Rating: 3/5

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