This is the first time I’ve ever bought into a support act; they’re usually generic acoustic soloists. Parisian synth-rockers The Penelopes warmed up for the Human League back in December, and gave a very fair account of themselves. Sure, the lead vocalist was consistently out-sung by his girl guitarist on backing vocals, but overall it was really good stuff.
They played a good bit of their 2012 album Never Live Another Yesterday at the gig. The particular stand-out for me was The Sweet Song (Fukushima Mon Amour), a crazy mega-tempo synthstrumental that caused my dad to ask incredulously, “did you enjoy that?” I nodded emphatically — it wouldn’t be out of place as a computer game final boss theme (if I amped up Ikaris…). It’s the same kind of slightly mad experimentation, but with successful results, that makes OMD so compelling. Should it work? Probably not. Does it work? Yes it does.
So I bought the album. Does it still work, alone in the bedroom with the speakers up? Yes. Yes it does.