CD, BOREDOMproduct, 2009
“Clean and modern electro-pop” is the headline on French duo Foretaste’s website, which is a lovely phrase and possibly my favourite type of electro-pop, at least after the dirty and vintage variety. Clean music is a good thing, although this contrasts slightly with the mildly sexual connotations of the band’s name, but maybe they’re tasting delicious food and drink rather than some good-looking acquaintance’s face or other parts. But names are not so important in the clean world of synthpop so I’ll try not to have a dig at the dodgy album title and instead concentrate on what is a very enjoyable collection of well crafted songs.
The cold and slightly aloof, heavily accented vocals of the improbably named Terrorist XX are the main attraction, providing the appropriate balance between subtle emotion and machine-like grace, and possibly giving many listeners an excited feeling of what they’d like to be tasting before they’ve even seen her. The clean, efficient synths of Terrorist XY complete the picture effectively, with a pleasing blend of the sounds of modern technology and the charming retro influences required for instant synthpop credibility. Occasionally, sequenced arpeggios are a little too prominent, bringing to mind unfortunate “futurepop” associations, but the lighter percussion sounds of classic synthpop and delicate, touching melodies help to maintain a certain reserved dignity and decorum to appeal to the indie-electro elite.
The album opens with “Dying For The First Time In My Life”, which understandably has been released as a single, and my mind is filled with images of exotic 80’s music shows, with tight fitting costumes, bright lights and strange moves. Still, there is a modern feel, and a good standard is set with this great track, continuing on the slightly EBM influenced “The Prototype Of Love”, while the colourful retro visions start to subside as more contemporary sounds take over. “Play The Game” has a pleasingly evocative “noir” feel, which persists on “No Remorse”, giving me more of those delightful 80’s images, this time picturing the troubled protagonist walking the streets of a run down city centre. “Keep Me Satisfied” would definitely satisfy the more darkwave/EBM oriented club goers, with its rolling bass line and moody vocals, while “21” is back in the classic electro-pop direction, although its processed voices are a little irritating. One of the finest tracks is “Autoportrait”, with a wonderfully moving melody and expressive lyrics, before “All I Know” lightens the mood slightly with another potential club hit and then “Anachronic” risks letting the side down slightly with its clichéd lyric statements over an otherwise great tune. “Soft and Delicate” isn’t such an appropriate title, with its uplifting, anthemic chorus refrain for the club kids to wave their hands about to, but finally “Ego” is an excellent closing track, a clean and modern sounding finish to a quality album which straddles two scenes rather well.
— Nathan Clemence