Future Bible Heroes

I'm Lonely (And I Love It) [EP]

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Stephin Merritt of Magnetic Fields became a critical favorite in part because of his astonishing eclecticism. Future Bible Heroes, and certainly this five-song EP, seem to be an outlet for him to deeply indulge in one genre in particular, electronic dance rock. (The band is not just a front for Merritt, as Christopher Ewen adds the synth beats and Magnetic Fields' Claudia Gonson shares vocals with Merritt.) This is much more melodic and poppy than most dance fodder sharing similar beats; one is tempted to be arch and postulate that there's too much of a tune (and too much thought and irreverence behind the lyrics) for the taste of many beat-driven club goers. If you don't like dance rock and do like Merritt's other projects, this probably won't change your mind about the style as a whole, but you probably will like this much more than most dance rock. If you're a dance rock fan, here's some wit that you can hum along to, as in the exotica ode "My Blue Hawaii," or the blithe title track, which is like a subtly cheerier Ian Curtis. And it's nice to have a wispy female singer (Gonson) taking the lead vocals on some tracks, to contrast with the deep-toned male drone (Merritt's) that's found in so much dance rock.

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