bis

data Panik etcetera

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After the D.I.Y. punkers turned disco wavers bis split up in 2005, the three members of the band (Sci-Fi Steven, John Disco, and Manda Rin) decided to carry on under a different name, with a slightly different style. After adding two new members, Stuart Memo (of Multiplies) and Graham Christie (ex-Kenickie tour drummer), they rechristened themselves Data Panik and over the course of a year released one and a half singles. They also wrote and recorded a few other tracks, shining up and focusing the bis sound into something more powerful, synthier, and hook-driven. Sadly, the band collapsed rather too quickly and the members went their separate ways. After a few years pursuing other projects, the core trio of bis reconvened to play festivals and the occasional show like 2013's Indietracks, then decided to make a serious go of a reunion. Before starting on new music, they figured it would be wise to empty out the vaults, which is where data Panik etcetera comes in. Spanning the years 2004-2006 and collecting all the tracks recorded with Data Panik, plus some tracks recorded for the unfinished fourth bis album, the album is both a nice summing up of the past and, hopefully, a clue to the direction the band is planning to take moving forward. Taking the high-energy sound of bis, adding lots of synth pop to the mix, then writing songs with razor-sharp hooks and huge choruses was a great idea and they pulled it off smashingly. Mixing up hard-charging power pop with synths ("Minimum Wage," "Rulers and the States"), shimmering disco punk ("Too Much Not Enough," "Music Lovers"), bubbling new wave ("The Young Mothers"), and songs that sound like vintage bis but more put together ("Control the Radical"), the album is filled with high-quality modern pop that pops like crazy. The band's devoted fans should be over the moon that these tracks have been rescued, remastered, and released. data Panik etcetera represents the band's most consistent and powerful material, even if it is a long way from the lo-fi hysterics of This Is Teen-C Power! If their future recordings follow the template they built here, bis may just be on their way to truly becoming the great band they always seemed right on the verge of becoming.

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