Circa 2000 – Thoughts in Vias

3 out of 5

Label: Computer Club

Produced by: Circa 2000

The A-side of Circa 2000’s Thoughts in Vias is somewhat misleading: kicking off with the excellent Cosmological Natural Selection, we’re ushered along for five minutes of synthwave without the kitschy veneer, slinking up and down keyboard waves with just enough nuance to make it modern, and unique.  Fall All Over the Place rides this style, introducing vocals in a rather Mouse on Mars-y, early 00s – hey, check that name – groove, with the side concluding with the darker, more minimalistic moods of Into Outside.  I’m game at this point.

The B-side, though, is make or break: more vocals; more of an 80s.  Depeche Mode is referenced on the bandcamp page, and although this is a softer touch than Depeche’s more beat-based sounds, I’d agree it’s of a similar mindset, with fairly open-ended lyrics and hummable musicality at a forefront.  To me, the instrumental tracks on the other side are what allowed Circa’s subtleties to shine through, with the vocal track inbetween an interesting juxtaposition.  Since the B-side is all vocals, though, that comparison is lost, and it’s all rather shimmery and sing-songy, and not really the experimental stuff I expect from the Computer Club label.