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Artist: Joy Electric
Label: BEC Recordings

In a landslide victory, Joy Electric's Ronnie Martin wins the Last Person Expected to Release an
Unplugged Album trophy.  "Monosynth" kicks things off, with acoustic piano replacing the Robot Rock
track's namesake instrument.  With prominent acoustic guitar, "True Harmony" belies more of Martin's New Order influence than the christiansongs original. Of two new compositions, "These Should be the Good Times" is particularly affecting, yearning to make the most of life's fleeting moments.

Unelectric isn't entirely unelectric; the programmed rhythms are still in place, joined on most tracks by synthy string swells and on others by the odd synthetic bass.  The stripped-down arrangements spotlight Martin's sometimes pitchy, helium voiceand melodic efforts, revealing occasional limitations. Here, the chorus of "Disco for a Ride" sounds like dead ringer for "Monosynth", which precedes it by a mere two tracks.

 Jeff Elbel 06/29/2000



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