Review : John Foxx & The Maths – The Shape Of Things

I know this album came out last year but I have been drawn back to it of late for a reappraisal as it really deserves it. Firstly we must thank Louis Gordon for persuading John Foxx to come back into the performing arena. Since then Mr Foxx has been working with The Maths (aka Benge) and this being the second helping from this collaboration. The pair have gone back to using some old analogue synthesisers and sequencers which John probably first used whilst in the original line up of Ultravox!

The opening instrumental ‘Spirus‘ does pay homage to his first bands workings with that earthly synthetic feel. This feeds perfectly into ‘Rear View Mirror‘ which could easily be the final chapter of his obsession with what would seem to be with cars. ‘Burning Car‘ and ‘No-One’s Driving‘ being tracks from his catalogue. It flows sublimely with no heavy sounds to distract you from the quiet man’s voice. ‘Talk‘ does exactly what it says very minimal but has the required effect, have a listen for yourself whilst reading on.The first real upbeat song comes in the form of ‘September Town‘, that is easy on the ear and certainly brushes away any cobwebs you may have had about the album. With the lyrics “Blue skies fade to blue eyes” it would suggest a vibrant time ahead. Next comes the dark sequenced evoking sounds of ‘Unrecognised‘ which is a real gem on the disc. You should listen to this track a few times to capture all the hidden elements locked within its depths. The track encompasses the line “..we can make mistakes..” if these are such mistakes, then long may they continue them for the foreseeable future.Throughout the album there are small musical segments which reminds me of the then ill-fated ‘Dazzle Ships‘ album by OMD. That in hindsight was quite ground breaking in reality. The screeching sounds of ‘Falling Away‘ I’m sure could be used by some gaming company for one of their shoot ’em up titles. For this song manipulates your mind into having something precious ripped from your grasp. ‘Invisible Ray‘then seems to slowly drain that final piece from you with is slow and crisp vocals. Whereas ‘Vapour Trails‘ restores a glowing feeling again with some inspiring electronic effects which soon have you flying above these imaginary clouds.

Tides‘ again relies on a sequenced back beat with fazed vocals which canters at a healthy pace. This parallels the general consensus of their latest output. Aptly the final track ‘The Shadow Of His Former Self‘ maybe a slice of John’s own older works again. For me this track could sit perfectly on his debut solo ‘Metamatic‘. An album that is over thirty years old but is again relevant in musical spheres. If you are quick you can still buy the double disc edition of this album, It includes remixes from the previous album ‘Interplay‘.

About Stevo Music Man

Music fan (Worked in music 79-92, gigs, collector, Indie DJ) Football (LCFC Season ticket), Travel, Read, Swim, Cycle & Internet.
This entry was posted in Music Review and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

So what do you think then ....

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s