Not so much a supergroup as a charmingly loose-limbed pickup band, Action Action was formed by former Reunion Show frontman Mark Thomas Kluepfel, who recruited Skully (the Reunion Show's drummer) and two alumni of Count the Stars, bassist Clarke Foley and guitarist Adam Manning, to help him out with this strange project. Going into the studio with producer William Wittman, who is better known for his work with Cyndi Lauper, Action Action laid down a program of distinctly retro-sounding pop music whose most prominent feature is '80s-style synthesizer. Actually, the guitars and vocals are all pretty '80s as well; basically, if you remember middle-period Psychedelic Furs or Echo & the Bunnymen with fondness, you'll get a big kick out of this album. And even if your memory doesn't go back that far, you'll have a hard time resisting the perfect popcraft on songs like "Photograph" and "This Year's Fashion." On the other hand, you may have an easier time resisting the less perfect popcraft of "Instructions on Building a Model Airplane," which tries very hard to build up a good head of steam but ends up just coming across as empty bluster. Most of these songs stick with you pretty tenaciously, though, and this is a very promising debut overall.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Rick Anderson