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AAA Music | 17 November 2019

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MAN WITHOUT MACHINES – The Kreuzberg Press

| On 04, Mar 2013

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Originally Beginning as a two piece, Adam Lockhart and keyboardist Valerie Campbell eventually expanded the line-up to the full cluster including Andrew Mitchell on bass and synth, Michael Benbow on drums and Stephen McCullough on guitar and synths. Originating in Dundee, the fourth largest city in Scotland, and are now fast becoming favourites on the live circuit of their native Scotland, Man Without Machines have also recently seen themselves sharing a stage with the likes of Django Django and Meursault.

Adam Lockhart is the major songwriter, vocalist and guitarist of the band. He is also known for his contributions to lo-fi Scottish act ‘Spare Snare’ who caught the attention of John Peel resulting in four live sessions on his show along with a Marc Riley session. Lockhart’s also performs in ‘The Devotional Ensemble’; an avant-garde experimental group who work have caught the attention of 6Music’s Freakzone.

Man Without Machines has announced that they will be releasing their debut album The Kreuzberg Press through Man vs. Man Records. Influenced by 80’s pop synth era and European politics and affairs, they have begun to create a style which is very unique in the music industry. Man Without Machines have been compared to other artists such as Human League, New Order and OMD, and to other music genres such as Indie band Pavement.

The opening track Even Still Even Though is basically a electro pop ballad in which everyone will surely get stuck in their heads, its catchy and captures Art Brut’s lyrical style and echoes into the intro of We Are Glass by Gary Numan. Next song Anyway quickly kicks in with heavy drumming, piercing synths and another set of catchy lyrics about appealing nature of consumerism in this indie track which fits nicely alongside Share The Love which is bouncy, energetic with a drum beat which really does give for a great listen which also talks about the current bank crises.

Adam Lockhart’s vocals can really be compared to Stephen malkums, of the indie band Pavement. More psychedelic synths, energetic drum beats and head bobbing. Intertextual knowledge would be Peterloo, which was the Peterloo massacre which happened in Manchester 1819 when the cavalry were sent to crush demonstration about parliamentary reform, which fits nicely with most of the themes of The Kreuzberg Press as they are, as I said mostly related to current affairs, politics and economy.

Taking a break from all the controversial lyrics, the non-political track Something’s Happening here was their first single released from the record and proved to be a hit with BBC’s 6 Music and BBC Scotland. The track is filled with rhythmic guitars, spiralling electronics, creating a catchy pop tune that could easily make this an indie dance floor classic.  This contrasted with the heavier its closer which inserts pulsating rhythms and only distant electronic echoes. It delves into the political relationships during the cold war. Lockhart’s vocals and lyrics share an engaging quality that makes this a stand out track.

New single and opening track Even Still Even Though will be released in February 2013 with a UK tour planned for March 2013.

Samantha L Grimshaw