|Electronic - Get The Message|
A decade later, Electronic was put on an indefinite hiatus, but the three albums that had come in-between provided a soundtrack that not only showed off the talents of the pair, but also charted the changes that the 90s made to Manchester.
With a plethora of big names making appearances as sometime members, guest musicians and studio technicians (how many others have a greatest hits that boasts a Pet Shop Boy, one of Doves, the legendary Arthur Baker, a quarter of Kraftwerk and a pair of mighty vocalists like Astrid Williamson and Denise Johnson?), Electronic moved from the glorious highs of the Hacienda to the brave new post-Factory future of Mancunian music.
What marked them out is what comes through most on this compilation. As Marr puts it in the sleeve notes, “Electronic were always in pursuit of the upbeat beautiful track”, presumably because their day jobs in New Order, The Smiths and latterly The The didn’t allow them to do just that. For the most part, they succeeded in their aim.
They’ll be forever linked with their debut, the mighty Getting Away With It, but what’s obvious from the 14 other songs on this collection is that they continued to produce great tunes across the entire decade.
Disappointed remains a fantastic pop song, For You has a thoroughly uplifting twist to it, Vivid and Like No Other are a fine pair of insistent little rockers and the excellent Get The Message still holds its own alongside the best of early 90s Mancunian tunes.
It took Sumner eight years to come out of New Order hibernation and release Get Ready in 2001. Hearing the songs that he made with Marr in that break again leads you to one conclusion: next year, it’ll be eight years since the last Electronic album. Maybe it’s time to bring this incarnation out of retirement.