NASA – Remembering the Future

NASA
Remembering the Future

Thanks to NASA, I now have a much better understanding of my deep-rooted schizophrenic personality. In the last week, I’ve suffered from a serious case of indecision. The first time I spun Remembering the Future, I was a pretty apathetic about it. The second time I sat and listened, I was sure that I was listening to the next big thing. However, two days later, I played the disc for a third time and, for whatever reason, could barely even stand to listen to it. Strange thing is, later that night I liked the disc again, only to get really angry and frustrated trying to take notes on it again the very next morning. I literally would fluctuate between really liking and strongly disliking this CD within a matter of hours on an everyday basis – Ugh. Me and my love/hate relationship with electronic music …

Anyhow, “The Road to Newtopia” starts the disc off in the right direction, using that cool vocal effect from Cher’s “Believe” over layered synthesizer effects without being annoying and also managing to sound like an electronic Ween (!?!?!?). “Back to Square One” is the definite ‘hit’ on the album, sounding like a techno-Hall and Oates (meant in a good way, of course). This, my friends, is how you write a good pop song. Vocals that seem to soar over stuttered synth noodling (especially during the amazing chorus) are the selling point for “Cloudcontrol,” while “Expansion” offers a brief (and eerie) respite from potential pop overload (I’m still trying to figure out exactly what the spoken instructions are for, though).

From this point on, however, the consistency seems to drop off significantly. The disc’s title track really lags a bit, managing to sound more like a techno-Sade than anything (NOT meant in a good way). “Nexterday” is catchy enough to regain the ‘bounce’ that the previous track lost, but it still seems monotonous. “Xenophobic” is a nifty electro-pop song with a very dark, moody synth/guitar (?) interlude, showing that NASA does have the potential to keep a seven minute song away from the pit of monotony. “Tell Me, Woman (Generator)” is a lot darker than the rest of the disc (save the interlude to the previous track), which helps to keep the lengthy song from droning on aimlessly.

“It’s About Time” is pretty standard electro-pop, with a ‘heavy-breathing-and-synth’ breakdown that scares me quite badly. “They Call Her Love” is a decent enough pop track with an infectious chorus, although there really isn’t much to this track that makes it stand out from the rest of the album. “Looking Forward to the Past” ends the disc on an up-tempo, yet average note.

So what have I learned today? Well, I learned that NASA’s “Remembering the Future” is a really cool electronic pop album with some sly lyrics and some neat techno-twinged enhancements. I also learned that I can sometimes display schizophrenic tendencies when perusing unfamiliar genres of music, which ultimately leads to a very difficult reviewing process. Still, the most important thing I learned this week is that it was a hysterical moment in children’s television history when ALF threatened to eat Garfield on the “Cartoon All-Stars To The Rescue” anti-drug special. Well, nothing else seemed to make sense to me this week, so I figured I’d pass the buck to the readers.