Man Factory, Sensitivity Boosters

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Posted June 21, 2006 by Listen Up in Music

Grand Prairie quirk-pop darlings Man Factory have finally updated a few of their home recordings and dropped them onto this disc alongside some tunes from self-proclaimed “emo-rappers” Sensitivity Boosters.

Fans of Papas Fritas, Scissor Sisters, Electric Six, and Denton’s Fishboy will probably get the biggest kick out of MF’s tunes — sweet blends of disco, pop, back-beat, and R&B, with maybe the slightest hint of anime theme music, all presented in appropriately slacker-hip lo-fi style.

Most of the songs champion the causes of unlikely heroes and anti-heroes. Outlaws, dinosaurs, a socially inept dude named Carl Jones — they all confront issues of the heart, while dealing with concerns like friendship and acceptance (and possibly in Carl’s case, probation). Almost everything is served atop an undeniably dancy beat adorned by occasional indie-pop-ish jazz excursions — y’know, for added flair.

Although MF focuses primarily on antics and anecdotes, the band does have its moments, like when a poignant lyric or progression pops up to reveal the genuine, non-sarcastic artful expression behind the posturing. On “Feelin’ Fancy (Goin’ Crazy),” a desperate suitor reels off a list of hopes for his new love. His voice is so sincere, you can’t help but believe him. “Give me what I crave,” he sings. “Let me just touch your soul.”

Falling somewhere between the Beastie Boys, The Streets, and Not Another Teen Movie, the satirical Sensitivity Boosters nicely complement their label mates. (The Boosters claim they’re from Seattle, but the lads maintain a variety of mailing addresses across North Texas and sing/speak with very convincing Texas accents.) And while MF sometimes slips in a knowing wink, the Boosters are deadly serious about their fun. Then again, indie kids rapping gangsta-style over intentionally cheesy symphonic synth arrangements is funny enough.

 


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