Latin Grammys 2018

Cruelty Without Beauty

Feeling bored by what's going on in the current nÜ-electro scene? Feel as though the kids aren't taking themselves seriously enough? If so, do yourself a favor and give a listen to Cruelty With

Feeling bored by what's going on in the current nü-electro scene? Feel as though the kids aren't taking themselves seriously enough? If so, do yourself a favor and give a listen to Cruelty Without Beauty, Soft Cell's first album of new material in 18 years. The smartly produced set spotlights two individuals—singer Marc Almond and keyboardist/programmer Dave Ball—who take their musicianship seriously. Throughout, Cruelty Without Beauty showcases the duo's uncanny knack for creating sublime pop hooks and warm melodies out of the bitter, the sweet, and the melancholic. Themes range from media manipulation ("Sensation Nation") to globalization ("Monoculture") and isolation ("Together Alone"). Tracks like "All Out of Love," "On an Up," and a sterling cover of Frankie Valli and the 4 Seasons' "The Night" demand immediate dancefloor action.—MP