Dating back to the Swell Maps and the Styrenes, bands approaching home recording with inexpensive technology often combined conventional pop elements with strange approaches to texture and layering. The lack of time constraints in home recording and the limitations of inexpensive equipment led these bands, and many after them, to unusual approaches to recording, even in the context of more conventional song structures. Monsieur Mo Rio, a German songwriter who sings in French, employs even more overt pop structures in his approaches to melodies, which often resemble the Beach Boys. His home recordings capture these parts with unusual sonic qualities, and juxtapose them in unconventional ways. The unusual layering of sounds emphasizes the odd construction of Click et Craque and distinguishes it from many of the nominally lo-fi pop records of the mid-'90s, which frequently employed more conventional rock arrangements. The constructions provide a fresh feel to a beautiful set of pop songs. (Fucky Laibel/Bergstr. 24/10115 Berlin/Germany)

Tape Op is a bi-monthly magazine devoted to the art of record making.

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