Hans 'Dark Waves' Dresden | San Jose, Calif. | 03/16/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The original album rates a solid 5+ in my book, being the quintessential synth pop record of its era, and to this day an unsurpassed recording, making it a definite desert island disc. Now we have here, in this latest 2010 Japanese SHM pressing with 9 bonus tracks, the penultimate release to date. Aside from having been nicely remastered, the addition of several single versions, 6 on CD for the first time, makes this an essential purchase, despite the currently high price tag of over 50 bucks. "Clean Clean" in particular is a treat, being a longer, more rocksteady take. Based on the insert with what appears to be individual numbering, this could be a limited release. If so, any Buggles fan will want to snap it up.
Who, besides the aforementioned fan, will want this? Certainly, it is a unique sound, having been made in the late 70's, at the time it came across very futuristic, but not in a cheesy way, and now stands as a pop masterpiece having techno sounds that would take another one to two decades to be woven into mainstream offerings with any reliable competence. True, the new wave era provided innumerable entries into the world of electronic pop, but the Buggles don't belong to new wave any more than to disco or punk or reggae, and not always rock, neither, although the later album, Adventures in Modern Recording would venture more into progressive rock territory. I guess what I'm getting at is that you may like this if you care for any of the aforementioned styles, or none of them! There are other, cheaper editions for sale here, with samples to listen to Age of Plastic (+3 Bonus Tracks). To me, it still sounds fresh after all these years (30?!?), due in equal measures to the inventive songwriting, and the inate production skills of the members, to be evidenced in subsequent years particulary by the many projects benefiting from Trevor Horn's musical sensibilities."