[Komputer E.P. sleeve]"Komputer E.P." (EP, 1996)


It's hard to believe this debut release from Komputer is already more than a decade old. Having given me countless hours of listening pleasure as I Start Counting in my formative years as a consumer of electronic music, followed (albeit less slavishly) by their stint as Fortran 5, Simon Leonard and David Baker remain two of England's most essential electronic music creators.

This four-track EP perfectly sums up the first phase of the Komputer sound, one that is influenced by the K-meisters themselves Kraftwerk, combining early electronic pop with dance music sensibilities. The highly melodic paean to Russian female cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova, the first female to fly in space in 1963 aboard Vostok 6, remains one of the band's most rewarding songs. A wonderful blend of low-fi keyboards, unexpected breaks, and shimmering hooklines, all set off perfectly by the deadpan yet character-leaden vocals. The other side of their sound, playful, is captured in the self-explanatory lyrics of We Are Komputer. Oh Synthesiser is a cheeky reworking of Kraftwerk's Neon Lights with a new arrangement and new lyrics. This was just the start of another fruitful run from this dynamic duo. 7/10

Rob Dyer (October, 2007)

Official website: http://www.komputer.org.uk

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