Exit Avenue – Made For The Arcade
Release Date: Summer 2006
What a question! Exit Avenue is a British act fusing generic pop-punk with the Adderall-free zone of electronic synths and loops. After listening to the album, I have come to agree with the apt description on their Myspace, “Sega-Jedi-Core++”. I mean, come on, the name of the record is Made For The Arcade. What did you expect, scotch and Polo?
How Is It?
Surprisingly fun, thanks for asking. As the ominous synth intro leads into the buzzing electronics and cymbals of “Sleepless Nights”, I couldn’t help but smile. Had I found another diamond in the rough? Sort of. Rough is a good word for the self-released album since Made For The Arcade (understandably) lacks good sound quality. Lead singer (they all contribute, however) Neil Barrett’s nasally, whiny voice is the most glaring misstep. A weak singer is a big deal, but you almost forget he’s there when the synths on “Better Off Alone” and “Goodbye Rose” are in full swing. However, a few songs lack any electronic effect, and Exit Avenue is extremely mediocre when simply playing pop-punk. I found myself just listening to the beginning of songs (when the synths are most profound) and then skipping to the next dancey beat. The added touches of piano ("Goodbye Rose", “Sing It Back Hunny”) and strings (“Wake Up”) show hints of intelligent songwriting, but too often innovation is merely an afterthought.
Recommended If You Like: Motion City Soundtrack, Enter Shikari (admit it), Crazy Taxi, Hellogoodbye, Jet Grind Radio