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CLICK CLICK (Buy CDs by this artist)
Wet Skin and Curious Eye (Play It Again Sam) 1987
Rorschach Testing (Play It Again Sam) 1988
Bent Massive (Play It Again Sam) 1989
Doublebill (Play It Again Sam) 1987

Snarling dyspeptic lyrics over beats that can only be described as dance-oriented (though I dread to think who would actually find this stuff conducive to booty-shaking), Bedfordshire, England's Click Click falls well short of Foetusian intensity and lacks the subtlety to get by on cleverness. Wet Skin and Curious Eye, a boring compilation of remixed singles ("Sweet Stuff," "Skripglow," etc.), finds brothers Adrian (synths, vocals) and Derek (drums) Smith, with help from a second synthesist, drummer/engineer Alan Fisch and a guitarist, working familiar tricks of the industrial trade with modest efficiency.

Doublebill pairs a long three-song Click Click 12-inch (the transitional "I Rage I Melt," plus two more non-LP items) with a Borghesia EP (Naked Uniform Dead) on the flipside.

Dropping the heavy rhythms and exaggerated vocals, Rorschach Testing brings the trio (Smith, Smith and guitarist Graham Stronach) into the realm of accessible techno-rock, suggesting a couple of Depeche Mode/Soft Cell fans on lithium. Neither appealing nor awful, tracks like "Perfect Stranger" and "Whirlpool" display skill but no imagination at all.

One LP was evidently enough light relief for Click Click. Adrian is partially back on the growl prowl with Bent Massive, an otherwise more open-minded musical adventure. Dynamic synthesizer/guitar arrangements (with samples and surprising variety) generally leave rhythms in a subsidiary role (although not on "Moist," a mighty, ominous dance number); the tracks are less songs than sonic experiments with words. Not bad.

[Ira Robbins]