Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Bikini Robot Army Music Review

Bikini Robot Army’s originally was a college band headed by Val Broeksmit along with Brandon Geiger and Matt Goldsborough. The three went their separate ways, but they continued to compile and record new music together. Much of their music was recorded from their homes across different states. This went on for years.

Today, they have 12 tracks and Bikini Robot Army is continuing to add more music to their library. Their new EP is very different. There are multiple influences in their music, some of which is comparable to music from the 60’s and early 70’s with a sense of modern electro funk, but with a familiar rock appeal. Some of these influences could be compared to David Bowie or even Moby.

The highlight of the EP is by far “Joe strummer's house take 2” by Bikini Robot Army. The song reminded me of hanging out in downtown LA at the roof top at The Standard. This is an exclusive club where music similar to Bikini Robot Army is often played to match the atmosphere.

Bikini Robot Army’s music is psychedelic with a touch of counter-culture music of the 60’s era with a visual of go-go dancers on mini-stages lifted high off the dance floors inside cages. This "hip" high energy style of music would be perfect for even the most popular clubs in New York, San Francisco, Chicago, and Los Angeles, but the rest of their music sort of falls off after, “Joe strummer's house take 2”.

After listening to Bikini Robot Army's other tracks, I felt let down with the rest of the music. One of the newest songs, "Desolation Row", a Bob Dylan cover had no alluring feature to it. It felt drab and gave no spark that compels the listener to want to press play again. One of the common traits that is heard throughout the EP is the word, “Cocaine”. There seems to be a fascination with the drug, because it is mentioned several times throughout in songs like, “Bitches and Blow”, “Never Going Back to LA”, “Joe’s Strummer’s House take 2”, and “Born Killa”. It can be annoying and with a feeling like this obsession is a bit overdone.

“Big Blues Jam That Will Melt Your Face” was strictly an instrumental. It could be a great piece, but some work on the arrangement during the guitar rhythms needs to be worked on to allow more cohesion. The other instrumental on the EP is, “Waa Ooo Waa”. There were no lyrics except some electronic programmed vocals with the words “Waa Ooo Waa”. For a performance at a local venue, this song may translate into a good song for a live audience, but this song does not translate very well on the EP. The electronic vocals pierce the eardrums and sounds like nails on a chalkboard.

Grading Bikini Robot Army, I give the song “Joe’s Strummer’s House take 2” a rating of 4 of 5 stars, but the rest of the EP, I give it a 3.

Find more of Bikini Robot Army on their official website and MySpace


  1. Personally I love their stuff but I'm not familiar enough with it to argue with you about particular tracks. I hear your valid point about certain tracks not necessarily being at their strongest as a part of an album that is listened to in traditional venues like the living room or the car, but my understand is this band is geared more toward jamming live and studio sessions.

    Sometimes music is all about the context. Thank you for you honest review either way.

  2. Hey Man, Val played that live version of Desolation Row at Wembly Stadium in front of 15,000 Dlyan fans. I was there, you should try listening to that song again dude. You might hear it differently.

  3. I have discovered that listening to music in a live setting is a whole different experience. It is rare and nearly impossible to duplicate that essence unless you witnessed it in person. So yes, I would have to agree with you that he sounded much better live.

    However, it did not translate in the recording very well.