Genre/Influences: EBM, electro-wave.
Background/Info: Dirk Da Davo entered into history as one of the Neon Judgement core-members. We also know Dirk for his originally solo-project Neon Electronics, which released its first self-titled album in 1999. The influences have been often pretty technoid-like. For this new opus Dirk Da Davo joined hands again with Glenn Keteleer (Radical G, The Juggernauts) and Pieter-Jan Theunis (bass guitar).
Content: The sound and influences on “Apollo” are pretty different from what I’ve been used to hearing from Neon Electronics. The technoid input has been (voluntary) lost and replaced by an eclectic sound, which is covering electro-wave and EBM influences. Electronics and guitar playing (sometimes a bit psychedelic-like) are in perfect harmony. The most surprising songs are two ‘covers’ from The Neon Judgement, which both were hits (cf. a live version of “TV Treated” and “Schizofrenic Freddy”).
+ + + : The main strength of “Apollo” is its diversity. There clearly is a vintage aspect reminding The Neon Judgement (and not only for the cover versions) but still a kind of wink to one of Liaisons Dangereuses’ hits (cf. “Être Assis Ou Danser”) entitled “Energy X” sung in French. Both Neon Judgement cover versions or adaptations make sense and remain great cuts. I’m still a huge fan of the synth line running to “TV Treated”, which is one of the iciest leads I’ve ever heard.
– – – : Generally speaking I like this work, but it’s a kind of ‘melting pot’ bringing different influences –and even Neon Judgement songs together. This album has less in common with previous works of this project and that’s maybe a pity!
Conclusion: Neon Electronics has never been so close to The Neon Judgement! It will be fine for the fans of Neon Judgement, but where’s the challenge for Neon Electronic lovers?! Don’t get me wrong; “Apollo” is a cool, but a bit unexpected work!
Best songs: “Energy X”, “TV Treated – Live 2018”, “Schizofrenic Freddy”, “Invisible Man”.
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