Neither woozy electropop nor deliberately cultivated airs of mystery around an artist are in particularly short supply at the minute, so the arrival of David West – a US-based Australian, once of the sublime Total Control – perhaps doesn’t hit home quite as hard as it should. He has indeed kept himself off the traditional PR radar, with a highly limited online presence and just the one press photograph of himself, in which he looks endearingly like a young Brian Ferry.
No matter; ‘Peace or Love’, the debut solo full-length LP that he’s been threatening to release for a while now, is a smartly executed exercise in electronic experimentation, from the noodling guitar solos of ‘Dream on Dreamer’ to the shimmering 80s synths that fizz with nervous energy on the coyly titled ‘Happiest Man In My Room’. West is by no means reinventing the wheel here, and there are moments that see ‘Peace or Love’ threatening to meander – the awkward ‘Au Contraire’ is a case in point – but this is a sleek, playful effort that finds its place in a crowded market.
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