Safety Scissors: Tainted Lunch

Tainted Lunch, Matthew Curry's second Safety Scissors full-length, offers an endearingly cheeky contrast to ~scape's normally sober fare. Mixed in Berlin by Vladislav Delay, the disc's glitch-hop geektronica offers a satisfying if nutty meal. Honking saxophones, synth squirts, electric piano, and guitar stabs flutter into view and vanish just as quickly, with Curry's naïve vocals unashamedly musing upon amnesia, housewives, and French cooking and, while he won't win any 'Best Male Vocalist' awards anytime soon, his amateurish delivery endears with its innocent bedroom charm.

At first, the album's off-kilter character befuddles but, after a few listens, one cottons to the songs' hook-laden charms. There's loopy French chanson (“L'amour d'cuisine”), bubbly electro-pop (“I Am the Cheese”), slow groovers (“Love Lately”), poptronica (“Sunlight on the Other Side”), and synth-blurping funk that suggest Mr. Scissors has been hangin' with The Soft Pink Truth (“Breastbone,” “Fly in my Soup”). Elsewhere, the bright soul-shimmy of “Amnesia, I Need You to Remind Me” is boosted by hilariously deadpan lyrics, “After Disaster” visits an exuberant tropical resort with Curry and Kevin Blechdom trading vocals, and a robotic Kraftwerk vibe emerges in the bleeping mechano strut of “Here Come the Housewifes.” Curry is most definitely the cheese on this anomalous yet mightily pleasurable ~scape outing.

November 2005