download-only CDS, Electric Fantastic Sound, 2007
Much electronic music takes bedroom acts through a veritable minefield of pitfalls and clichés – armed with a flexible technology to write music and the desire to stand out – but blindfolded nevertheless. Social Ambitions use a sixth sense in their song writing and sound creation that allow them to pass through this unscathed.
Echoing staples like early Depeche Mode and Yazoo instrumentally, even Simon Le Bon and Pete Burns vocally, Social Ambitions capture the warmth and diversity of sounds available but often overlooked in favour of the rushed, cold and digital, repetitive approach to making electronic music. That said – the songs are strong in their own right.
“Burning” is kicking, and resurrects an oft-heard bass-line with sweet ornamentation and an over-the-shoulder glance at 1981. “The Right Way” is cheekier, laden with the kind of cooing ambiguity and suggestiveness that only calls for creamy horn sounds and vocal eccentricity, while “Distance” is a slower lament that lends to seriousness but in a personal and credible way.
Here is a band that comprehends the soul inherent in synthesiser music and how simple, busy collages of gorgeous phrases underpinned with honest vocals can delight the senses. Easily the label leaders by a length along with brothers Godlike and worth listening to enough to become infected!
— James Ryan