Review: Class Actress – Rapprocher

There’s a whole lot of potential in this interesting American synth pop artist, even if this debut full-length somewhat misses the mark here and there. Elizabeth Harper of Brooklyn has a distinctive British sound and what she’s set out to accomplish is as exciting as it is commendable. But too often the songs don’t go anywhere unexpected or all that interesting and it does occasionally feel like the land of missed opportunity.

The *sound* of the album is exceptional. It’s in-your-face blatant early 80s classic synthpop with sounds lifted straight from the charts circa 1981. The instrumental section of “Let Me In” sounds like it’s been sampled directly from early-era Human League albums. Her central ethic is admirable and well executed. And when it works it’s a wonder. “Weekend”, “Missed” and “Keep You” are perfectly executed and joyous to listen to. You’ll feel transported back in time. Other songs don’t work as well because they feel like forgettable album tracks and there ends up being too much filler to sustain the album.

But we’d like to focus on the flashes of greatness. For a debut full-length Harper shows remarkable maturity and in the better tracks we see fully what she’s capable of, and it’s exciting. The movement needs her. There need to be unabashedly pop-oriented electronic artists who can straddle the line between commercial musicality and alternative moray, and she does so in spades. Tighter and more consistent writing could see Class Actress grow into a truly important genre artist and it’s exciting to think of what Harper could produce next. The waiting will be delicious…

Watch: Keep You (unofficial video)

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