ALBUM REVIEW: Rodney Cromwell – Memory Box


ALBUM REVIEW: Rodney Cromwell - Memory Box

Rodney Cromwell, the alter ego of Happy Robots label boss Adam Cresswell, returns this week with his long-awaited second album, Memory Box. It picks up from where its predecessor, Age Of Anxiety, left off. With Memory Box, Cromwell once again shows why he is one of the most innovative, enjoyable electronic acts around.

Opener Intercom sets the scene perfectly in a blizzard of dark synths and vocoder, and then with track two, Opus Three, you’re hooked. Imagine Vince Clarke leaving Yazoo and joining Power Corruption & Lies era New Order – this song is how that would sound. It’s quite brilliant and one of Cromwell’s best tracks.

The album’s title track follows its early Mute synths, complementing the poppier Opus Three. The album moves into darker territory with Fluctuations, and Waiting Room, the latter one of the album’s standouts before the Kraftwerk like Cloud Catalogue sees the album return to its earlier synthpop sound. The Department Of Public Tranquillity might well be how The Cure had sounded if they had gone fully electronic; its eerie lullaby (no pun intended) sound very Smith-like.

The album’s three closing tracks are a real joy. Wristwatch Television is like a glam rock Silicon Teens, which is very much not a bad thing. Its light feel is quickly offset by the dark instrumental Calculations, which is awash with wonderfully spooky 70’s style synth sounds. We close with The Winter Palace, a glorious pure synthpop track that ends the album perfectly.

As with Age Of Anxiety, Memory Box perfectly shows Rodney Cromwell’s many talents. It is an album that deserves as wide an audience as possible, and if you are a fan of electronic music of any type, you’ll find something here to love.

Memory Box by Rodney Cromwell is released on Happy Robots on 18th March 2022.

Xsnoize Author
David McElroy 91 Articles
Fav Band: Depeche Mode Fav album: Violator - Depeche Mode

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.