Boomkat Product Review:
Early ‘80s Germany’s answer to Depeche Mode resurface on Mannequin with reissue of the duo’s revered debut, augmented by an hour of previously unheard demos
The Actor’s ’Exploded View’ is a true underground perennial of minimal synth-pop and new wave originally released by Dutch label Trumpett in 1982, and subsequently Mannequin in 2014 abreast of an explosion of interest in ‘80s machine music annals. This 2023 edition still packs the band’s sole album, studded with gems such as the slow and sleazy opener ‘Unreal Personality’, a lean precedent for Dopplereffekt in ‘Covergirl’, and the Foxxy slow dance of ‘Seit Wir Uns Kennan’, but now also backed with an hour of unreleased material spanning demos 1981-1984 certain to satisfy lovers of rustiest synth tang and synth-pop pep.
We advise one to check for the wildly overdriven bassline on ‘Wählerisch (Demo)’, the blistered tape of ‘Picture 201 (demo)’, a proper pre-echo of John Maus in ’40-50-60’, and the supremely bittersweet tone of ‘UCX-S (Demo)’ if you like licking batteries and pouting in the mirror.