We gave it a C+
Fischerspooner are obsessed with a style of the ’80s: old-wave techno-pop (now called electroclash). Their debut, #1, has everything one would want from an album recorded in, say, 1982: farty synths and ping-pongy drum machines, a blood-drained singer, synthetic hand claps. It’s both impressive (the whooshy ”Emerge” and a cover of Wire’s ”The 15th”) and pointless. Thin songwriting doesn’t help either. The new element Fischerspooner bring to the table is kitsch: With their campy costumes and Twyla Tharp-on-X dance troupe, they’re as much a performance-art project as a group. The way the band cherishes and mocks its sources says a lot about what distinguishes the ’80s renaissance from previous revivals. Everybody may be walking on sunshine, but they’re winking all the while.