By Jaime Burnet
With all of the dark synth, seductive vocals, drugs and sexuality of the ’80s, Mark Thomas Kluepfel’s new band, Action Action, is a trip back to the land of “Tainted Love” and hot pink Spandex. The band certainly not afraid of that connection, that hot pink sprayed all over Action Action’s debut, Don’t Cut Your Fabric to This Year’s Fashion.
Songs from Mark’s previous band, The Reunion Show, consisted of less intimate lyrics, something he is happy to move beyond. Action Action features Kluepfel’s versatile vocals, as well as his guitar and synth stylings, Dan Leo on drums, and Clarke Foley and Adam Manning of Count The Stars on bass and guitar. Each band member, besides Leo, does his part to vocally supplement Kluepfel. The long locked, bowler wearing frontman’s voice is a gritty moan, becoming at times, especially on “Instructions on Building a Model Airplane”, a Cobain-like cry. Everyone takes a turn on the synthesizer, and guest appearances are made by musical celebrities such as guitarist Eddie Reyes of Taking Back Sunday, who is featured on “Bleed”.
All of these elements come together to produce a veritable parfait of musical appeal, with the poppy “Photograph” as the sugary top layer (tastes like strawberry jam), the distorted guitar on “Let’s Never Go to Sleep” as the crunch (tastes like walnuts), “The Short Weekend Begins With Longing” as the basic, middle layer (tastes like The Cure), and the eerie, dark “Drug Like” as the delicious goo you have to scrape off the bottom.