Review: Adult. – Gimmie Trouble

Sufjan Stevens may have taken his stab at depicting Michigan in song, but for my money, few acts may be painting the state’s automotive graveyards and factory wastelands in sonic terms as vividly as Adult., the Detroit trio whose studied electro-punk bears an industrial precision and claws at your ears with almost apocalyptic fervor.

Gimmie Trouble is all vintage synths, electronic percussion and off-kilter new wave gestures but what keeps it from falling into the ever-growing cult of Devoism (I’m talking to you, Servotron) is Nicola Kuperus’ forceful and punky delivery, which can feel as seductive as it is menacing.

On songs like the album-opening title track, the way she repeatedly wails lines like “Why don’t you give me /Gimmie some trouble!” as Adam Lee Miller constructs tides of cascading synth scales and Bizarro-world B-52’s-tinged guitars can get even the most rhythmically challenged among us shaking their spines.

Throw dark, plodding exercises like “Disappoint The Youth” into the mix and you’ve got a record that’ll challenge both club fiends and those who think a punk front woman’s got to be packed by a wall of distorted guitars. – Punk Planet, March/April 2006

About the author

Justin Vellucci is a staff writer for PopMatters, Spectrum Culture, and MusicTAP, a contributor to Pittsburgh Current, and a former staffer for Popdose, Punk Planet and Delusions of Adequacy. His music writing has appeared in national magazines such as American Songwriter, alt-pubs like The Brooklyn Rail, Pittsburgh CityPaper and San Diego CityBeat, blogs Swordfish, Punksburgh and Linoleum, and the Gannett magazine Jetty. He lives in Pittsburgh.