Slap [unmodified]
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Slap [unmodified]


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The best kept secret in music


"Black Turtleneck - Musical Chairs Review"

Sure, a synth pop revival act may have been more of a novelty a few years back, but this duo aren't interested in being a novelty, despite their Darkness-like band name and dedication to "the introspective black turtleneck set, working the day job in silent contempt." Comprised of Solvent producer Jason Amm and vocalist Thomas Sinclair, they've been intermittently active since 2002 though this is their proper debut. Amm's music combines complex beat structures and low-level club bleeps with nostalgic synthesisers, while Sinclair's deadpan vocals sound like they're coming from the other side of the pond and the other side of the millennium — a match succeeding most perfectly on the single "Discontinued Parts". Aside from their titular piss-take, these '80s babies are dead serious about their electro pop homage, ditching the usual ironic posturing in favour of a more reverent ride down Depeche Mode lane.
(Joshua Ostroff) - Exclaim! Magazine - July 7, 2006

"Black Turtleneck "Musical Chairs" Review"

When Jason Amm sings over the electro melodies he's made as Solvent for the past decade, he cloaks himself in vocoder, sounding shy, robotic, and distant. On his newest project, Black Turtleneck, Amm and vocalist/co-producer Thomas Sinclair croon into a mostly unadulterated mic, belting out upbeat synth-pop of the early Depeche Mode variety. With "Discontinued Parts," the duo opens with the catchiest of love songs to an ailing synthesizer; they close with a breezy French house tune titled "Cul de Sac," which suggests nothing of the kind. Musical Chairs is the best kind of "intelligent dance music" — a well-crafted pop album for swaying and bopping — that'll win over nerds and newbies alike. (JSS) - Earplug Magazine - July 2006

"Slap [unmodified] - Auto [repeat] review"

Slap [unmodified]'s Auto [repeat] single arrives in two equally enticing formats: on 7-inch vinyl and 3-inch CD (a limited edition, digitized version that includes two extra tracks), both housed in a beautiful, matte-finish colour sleeve. The single is a very sleek bit of business indeed by Canadian producer Thomas Sinclair, also known as one-half of electro-pop outfit Black Turtleneck (Solvent's the other) which issued last year's solid Musical Chairs album.

Thomas declares his Slap [unmodified] music to be “(e)ffervescent synthesizer music for freaks and geeks” so you know upfront it'll be in that delicious electro synth-pop vein that Solvent and Lowfish traffic in so splendidly. The A side's “Auto-repeat (version 2)” doesn't disappoint in that regard. Pulsating and sleek, the tune combines hard-hitting drum machine beats with hammering synth patterns and an elegantly dark central theme—all that, plus a late-inning vocal by Sinclair that's both smooth and epic. The quality level doesn't drop in the other tracks, either, all of them packed with gleaming synthesizer melodies and punchy beats. The pristine production style allows every sound to jump out with crystalline clarity, and Sinclair boosts the material even more with razor-sharp edits that, in a few well-chosen moments, slice the voice and drums into neat little bits. Solvent devotees in particular and synth-pop aficionados in general would do themselves a grave disservice if they didn't snap up this classy little number immediately.

August 2007 - Textura - August 2007

"Slap [unmodified] - Auto [repeat] review"

Dear robot friends:

Please take a momentary break from defragging your C drives in order to learn about one of your new musical representatives. The information that follows will, regrettably, not be presented in binary. Please adjust your language settings appropriately.
Slap [unmodified] is the new solo project by the Canadian musician Thomas Sinclair. Sinclair, you may recall, is also one half of the electro outfit Black Turtleneck (the pun stays. deal with it), who released the excellent 2006 record Musical Chairs (the other half of Black Turtleneck, for those not in the know, is Jason Amm aka Solvent). This seven inch is also the first release from Sinclair’s new self-started label, Architecture of Sound, which I fully expect to continue releasing quality electronic music.

As a packaging nerd, I was pleased with the seven inch, as it also includes a bonus mini disc (I have an unnatural love of the mini disc format. It disappeared for awhile, it seemed. Please world, bring it back.) with two additional songs not included on the three-song EP. Score.

The music itself is equally as excellent, branching out from Black Turtleneck’s straightforward electro-pop sensibilities into more sparse, experimental dance tracks with an emphasis on machines rather than vocals. Listening to these tracks makes it easy to forget the years and years of bad electro [crapwave] that seemed to haunt the music scene in the not-so-recent past. It takes dance music back to its roots; unrelenting beats, synthesizers galore, and vocals in just the right place, its a record that does everything right. It has a definite back to basics feel, but that is simply the foundation upon which Sinclair crafts his own unique brand of electronic music. Fans of Solvent and Lowfish, people with good taste, and those that enjoy innnovative electronic music, take note. I highly recommend this release.
Thank you. This has been a robot public service announcement.

By Amber-void

Rating: 9/10

- / August 2007


Musical Chairs (Black Turtleneck) - Album - June 2006 - Normal Welcome Records
Auto-repeat - 7" vinyl + CD EP - August 2007 - Architecture Of Sound


Feeling a bit camera shy


Slap [unmodified] is the project of Montreal-born musician Thomas Sinclair, who first came to note on last year's Musical Chairs album as half of Canadian electro-pop duo Black Turtleneck (with Jason Amm aka Solvent).

The debut ep; Auto [repeat], is a factory-like composite of sophisticated synthesizers, untiring rhythms, and razor-sharp edits. A record that pushes buttons and resets electronic dance music to it's default setting.