Fosca Diary Of An Antibody

Making '80s-style pop music isn't as easy as it might seem. The trick is to take the genre quite seriously, but to keep a tongue-in-cheek approach to its delivery. Pulp has proved how this can work brilliantly and London's Fosca seem to be playing in the same ballpark, but they somehow fall short of delivering the goods on Diary Of An Antibody. Sure, they have a well-coiffed, well-dressed singer (Dickon Edwards), all the right synth-heavy instrumentation and campy subject matter, but somehow the final result doesn't have the punch that it should. The album does have really catchy songs, like "Secret Crush on Third Trombone," "I'm On Your Side" or "The Director's Cut," but these are songs that scream out for a more layered and grandiose production style. Edwards' vocal delivery is a bit flat, but his all-female band-mates manage to bail him out of a lot of trouble. Producer Ian Catt, better known for his work with Fosca's label-mates Trembling Blue Stars, lets his style come through a bit, but unfortunately he doesn't give Fosca quite the lift they need. Still, Fosca shows a great deal of skill at songwriting and presentation, and if their recorded sound is given a bit of a boost, they could rightfully earn a chance at picking up where Pulp left off. (Shinkansen)