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Thursday, November 16, 2006

Fad Gadget by Frank Tovey: A Retrospective in Sound and Vision

Posted on Thu, Nov 16, 2006 at 4:00 AM

Fad Gadget by Frank Tovey: A Retrospective in Sound and Vision
Label: Mute
Length: LP
Media: CD
Format: Album
WorkNameSort: Fad Gadget by Frank Tovey: A Retrospective in Sound and Vision
As a seminal electronic/industrial artist (he was the first act signed to Mute Records and influenced artists as diverse as Erasure and Einstürzende Neubauten), Frank Tovey's highly individual take on electronic music never seemed to get the public acclaim it deserved. Though a 2001 tour with Depeche Mode did put his singular dark-pop vision in front of a lot of new (and young) eyeballs, his death in April 2002 ensured his legacy would be mostly posthumous. The label he helped kick-start in 1979 with the 'Back to Nature� single repays the favor with a jam-packed (and dirt-cheap at $29.98) box set that compiles 30 audio tracks ' everything from the driving electro-pop of 'Swallow It� and 'Back to Nature� to demo tracks, unreleased cuts and, most pleasing, some of Tovey's collaborations with experimentalist Boyd Rice. Those two CDs are complemented by two DVDs brimming with promo videos, TV appearances, a fantastic documentary and excellent live footage from both the prime, early-'80s era and Tovey's re-emergence in the '00s.

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