Gil Mantera’s Party Dream Once Triangular

[Super Plus; 2004]

Rating: 3.5/5

Styles: synth-pop, ’80s, joke rock
Others: Ladytron, A-Ha, Naked Eyes, Tears for Fears, Joy Division

Hailing from Columbus, Ohio, Gil Mantera's Party Dream are a regional phenomenon. Together with acts like suburban rappers Grand Buffet and party-remixer Girl Talk, GMPD are at the vanguard of the performance art-cum-novelty act wave sweeping the eastern parts of the Midwest. The duo consists of keyboardist/vocalist Gil Mantera and his brother, vocalist/guitarist Ultimate Donny. Together, the band plays goofy '80s synth-pop, with Donny singing and Gil adding vocoder-processed backup over programmed beats. Although it might at first appear that the band favors style over substance, especially given the elaborate costumes and ridiculous lyrics, Once Triangular reveals a real knack for melody; nearly every song on the album is catchy enough to ensure that GMPD audiences quickly pick up the sing-a-long tip. The Party Dream is astute enough to realize that their ballyhooed live show (featuring heavy drinking, costume changes, stand-up comedy, physical challenges, and a lot of profanity) is their most distinguishing feature. As such, they've included 11 different segments of stage banter to remind listeners why they first heard of these guys. Once Triangular is necessarily a bit of an artifact when compared to the Party Dream live experience, something to warm one's friends up before attending the actual show, but "Eurolung," "Chalklit Pyhe (parts I and II)," "Tigers," and "Blats from the Pabzt" are really fucking catchy. As much as I have to concede that Once Triangular doesn't match the live spectacle (Gil's dancing is really irreplaceable), I definitely encourage those who've enjoyed the show to throw a few more bucks at these dudes and take home a souvenir. I don't see any reason why this shit shouldn't be immense.

1. pressureintro
2. tigers
3. rock the show
4. pressure02
5. eurolung
6. pressure03
7. chalklit pyhe I
8. pressure04
9. chalklit pyhe II
10. pressuregoaway
11. don't
12. pressure06
13. shifty capers
14. pressure07
15. steady rockin'
16. pressure08
17. blame it on roseanne
18. pressure09
19. halloween I
20. pressure10
21. mountain express
22. pressure11
23. blats from the pabzt

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