Airport's full-length debut, Lift Off With Airport, features bassist/producer Tony Barber of the Buzzcocks on all of the instruments. The album -- 13 tracks in all, adding up to a mere 32 minutes total -- is a nostalgic journey back again to the late '70s/early '80s, when snarling British punk with loud guitars and bitter, politically charged vocals wouldn't have always been accented by spacy bleeps and squishy synth lines. In 2001, these kinds of two-chord stop-start punk rock rhythms and vintage new wave accoutrements sound closer to novelty than new wave. Imagine the anti-Thatcher political references of the Jam cross-pollinated with the Age of Plastic-era Buggles (or maybe even Meco). Barber's sneering lyrical stance confirms this unholy alliance in the very first track, "9T's Problems," during which he sings "No free love, it didn't go that far/It's all over now, it's nostalgia." "I Got the Millennium Blues," meanwhile, clocks in at a mere 50 seconds, and is, as you might expect, something of a throwaway sentiment. "Newtown Shakedown" and "International Sham" -- the latter track was issued, in a polyvinyl bag, on the tiny Edmonton Green label in 1997 -- are probably the best songs on the album. They lyrics to the hooky "International Sham," as a matter of fact, attacks gluttonous consumerism at its heart, but its over-stated complaints fail to persuade.
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AllMusic Review by Bryan Thomas