But to those aware of late-'70s new wave, early '80s synth pop, and Detroit's first techno twitchings, Anxiety Always may have an overly familiar ping to it. The duo's reliance on stiff rhythms, quaint drum-machine beats, neurotically uptight if tuneful arrangements, and rote alienation may seem too much in thrall to Tubeway Army, Fad Gadget, and the Normal. We need a different kind of tension, as the Buzzcocks presciently noted 24 years ago. One wonders whether Adult has earned its neuroses -- or is just wearing them as fashion accessories.
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