Alpinestars : White Noise

Mancunian duo's frosty retro disco...

Richard Woolgar and Glyn Thomas are skilled at false advertisements. Not only is their second album possibly the least aptly-titled in recent history, but it bears little resemblance to any expectations raised by Alpinestars‘ origins in Manchester’s defunct Homoelectric club.

Instead of processed experiments in subliminal and/or excruciating noise, the duo offer a supremely pretentious descendant of ’80s synth-pop. And where there should be Hi-NRG beats or four-to-the-floor house thumpers, you get a kind of time-lapse musical photography of times when everyone thought it was cool to be mysterious and (mainland) European.

Traces of New Order surface on ‘Vital Love Disciple’, and the two contrasting takes of ‘Snow Patrol’ suggest, if you will, techno drained of strength, industrialism and will. Flamboyance and melancholy in equal measure, then, but ‘White Noise’ mainly leaves you cold.