Creep Show brings together John Grant with the dark analogue electro of Wrangler (Stephen Mallinder, Phil Winter, Benge) to create Mr. Dynamite – a debut album packed with experimental pop and surreal funk. Recorded in Cornwall with a lifetime's collection of drum machines and synthesizers assembled by Benge and explored by every member of Creep Show, there's a real sense of freedom in the shackles-off grooves, channeling the early pioneering spirit of the Sugarhill Gang through wires and random electric noise. This sense of adventure is also part of the interplay between the two vocalists, John Grant and former Cabaret Voltaire frontman Stephen Mallinder, who switch between oblique wordplay to sinister humor as Phil Winter and Benge continue to man-handle the machines.
The creepy ‘alter-ego' title track, "Pink Squirrel's" vocoder kaleidoscope and Grant's exhilarating croon on the nine minute "Safe And Sound" are just some of the twists and hooks to be explored on this consistently inventive record. But for every weird, esoteric mood and texture explored there's always a beat and a fresh sense of adventure, whether through the Space Invader electro of "Tokyo Metro," squelchy synth-funk of "Modern Parenting," the warped, experimental arc of "Endangered Species" or "Lime Ricky's" ferocious breakbeat workout. On "K Mart Johnny," ripped-up, distorted sounds and sinister voices accumulate on the cold electronics like flies on neon, but the rhythms and synth stabs still propel it forward, in this case into a bizarre story of childhood name-calling and revenge centered around a yellow-spotted toy dinosaur.
Mr. Dynamite ends with two of the longest tracks – the beautiful Kraftwerk-in-space, pristine but cosmic "Fall" and the Moroder-esque odyssey, "Safe And Sound." The latter is a brilliant climax to the album, Grant's vocals at their most opulent and moving.