Somnambule - Writing About Music

Cursor Miner ~ Cursor Miner Plays God

It sounds like Cursor Miner might just have finished soldering his keyboards together as part of a science project and has now been allowed to record the result in the music room: vocoders are singing, oscillators are oscillating, noisegates are snapping open and shut. “War Machine” sings the praises of digital warfare: “In the bad old days of war, killing used to be a chore. Now there’s just a switch to flick, oh so easy oh so quick...” The next two tracks continue on similarly contemporary themes (“Man Made Man” and “Gizmo Kid”), but then the album takes a left turn with “Sport Of Kings” which presents eight and a half minutes of revelling in the tactile joy of maxed-out analogue keyboards. It’s a foot-stomping crowd-pleaser. Next up “Foetus” delivers a very silly lyric “I want to be an embryo-o-oh, and live in somebody’s womb. I’m asking all the girls if they’ve got any room” over a playground melody rendered in fat, squelchy sonics. “Library” is a paen to the joys of borrowing books full of groan-inducing rhymes. Final track “Grilling The Cheese” is a companion to “The Sport Of Kings” in length and attitude: it’s another floor-filler, this time in overdriven techno mode, to such an extent that it seems it might explode or break apart at the seams at any moment.

This is music for fans of early 80s electronic pop such as The Human League circa Reproduction and Travelogue, Air and Giorgio Moroder (“From Here To Eternity”). There’s also something of the humour of Dat Politics and Stock Hausen and Walkman. This album exhibits bucketfuls of enthusiasm: Cursor Miner is as unafraid of sell-by dates as he is of whistleable tunes. It’s full of disposable – but naggingly difficult to forget - pop tunes you might just wish it was possible to excise from your memory, if only you could. Cursor Miner Plays God is techno pop in all its thrashy, trashy, noisy glory. Don your silver jumpsuit, backcomb your hair as high as it will go and sing along.
Colin Buttimer
July 2004
Published by Grooves magazine