Thoughts Detecting Machines: Work the Circuits

(Twelve Inch Records)

As part of the groundbreaking late-80s alternative band Poster Children and its electronic side project, Salaryman, Rick Valentin has had a multitude of outlets for his musical ideas. His latest project is Thoughts Detecting Machines, an outlet where Valentin builds songs out of guitar, vocals, and electronic loops.

As a whole ‘Work the Circuits’ marries the early influences of punk-rock guitars Valentin had in Poster Children with the atmospheric electronica he had with Salaryman. The two coming together in Thoughts Detecting Machines is an interesting and wild ride, one which suits Valentin perfectly.

Standout tracks on ‘Work The Circuits’ include the album’s lead track and first single “New Day,” a song poking the stick at fads which are supposed to make the human race better, but ultimately become the problem themselves. The guitar drive on “The City” is mixed perfectly with electronics and a soft piano, while the rumbling of bass lines on “White Lies” is simply intoxicating.

For me personally, technology scares the shit out of me, but its people like Valentin who make it intriguing, especially when he merges music and technology for Thoughts Detecting Machines’ ‘Work the Circuits.’ The end product is what Valentin describes as a “unified field theory” of his creative interests.

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