You read the header right, Wang effing Chung is back with a new full-length! For the uninitiated in ’80’s culture, Wang Chung taught us all to Wang Chung back in the ’80’s and provided the score for one of the greatest William Friedkin movies of all time, To Live And Die In L.A. starring that guy you might know as Grissom in CSI and that guy who played the cross dressing Fed in The Boondock Saints. On Tazer Up!, Jack Hues and Nick Feldman are back with their first studio album in almost 16 years and it honestly sounds like they never left.
Never a band to shy away from their past, Wang Chung opt to open Tazer Up! with a new version of “Dance Hall Days” which not only serves as a memory jogger for those who may have forgotten but a perfect segue into Wang Chung circa the 21st Century. Following is some brand spankin’ new WC in the form of “City Of Light” which comes out with guitars blazin’ and an abundant of sing-a-long “Woo’s” to start. “Let’s Get Along” settles into a nice little groove (Thanks in part to Feldman’s bass work) until the Abducted By The ’80’s synth-heavy track “Rent Free” begins and brims nostalgia yet still has a firm foot in the present. And it’s super catchy, too.
Speaking about 2010’s comeback EP, the title track also shows up amidst a cacophony of electronics and ’80’s references while “Stargazing” (Also on Abducted…) closes Tazer Up! with seven minutes of Chung-ian style rock showing off Hues shredding and his always smooth vox. This is one that easily could’ve ended up on the L.A. soundtrack yet still sounds so current. Another highlight on TU! is the white boy funk of “Why” giving some nods to “Everybody have Fun Tonight” and bringing The Time (Original Se7en I mean. Sorry.) to mind while elsewhere, the synths fly high yet again for “London Orbital” (Originally on Abducted…) which is easily one of the bands best tracks.
One thing is clear after listening to Wang Chung’s latest on repeat, the band is definitely back. Love them or hate them (And really, how could you hate this band?), Wang Chung is poised to become another ’80’s band with true staying power.
Tazer Up! is out today. Just in time for Christmas. Treat your loved one. Treat yourself!
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