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Part Time: Show Preview 

Wednesday, Aug 14 2013
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Nostalgia for the 1980s plays out in different ways for Bay Area pop artists Part Time and Sam Flax. Part Time seeks the smoothness of the era's gated drum machines, Casio keyboards, and instrumental isolation, like Sade or Wang Chung. Flax, on the other hand, stirs synthesizers, guitar, and live drums in a retro cauldron for the thick version of '80s production. Both groups engineer their records to look backwards, but showcase engaging and unique vocalists as well. Part Time's David Speck is precarious, veering from goofy to dulcet in a single line, while Flax enunciates deliberately. He opts for accurate phrasing and pitch. Of course, both singers nearly drown in reverb, but that's not unique to the '80s.

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Sam Lefebvre

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