Tony Palkovic

Born With A Desire

Numero Group • 1985

Who is this band? Well, it was all recorded and produced by the artist himself. Tony Palkovic plays guitar, synthesiser and »digital drums« on this album, but it’s not entirely clear whether this means just a drum machine or also electric drums. The groove on »Born With A Desire« often sounds machine-made, but not always. The bass, however, is not. This is synthetic fusion with a human face. Everything sounds like a polished surface, effortless euphoria flowing past consciousness in electronics whose patterns have something haunting about them. What comes across as uninviting sounds irresistible. The desire that Tony Palkovic is dealing with here proves to be survivable even in the medium of the gentle background hum. All in all, Palkovic’s album is a great example of a DIY aesthetic that doesn’t want the unkempt and rebellious look commonly associated with musical home-studio work. Whether you think the cover image is a pure expression of heteronormativity or a stylised representation of the artist’s personal statement is a more difficult question. Anyway, it would be great if the artwork didn’t get in the way of discovering this amazingly creative record from Palkovic, who sadly passed away in 2019. It’s a fantastic example of a retro-futuristic style that fits in perfectly with current trends.