This is a review of "The Man Who Makes Volcanoes" recorded by Plasticine. The review was written by Richard Garnett in 2006.
Describing yourself as the sort of band journalists hate to write about because you are so genre defying is equivalent to tying up a lamb in front of a lion... you really ought to know what is coming next. In fact Plasticine are quite easy to write about, certainly easier than they are to listen to. Producer Stephen Fox makes a superb job of the production but his saccharin vocals are better suited to a stage musical than a rock band, at best sounding like Alison Moyet and at worse like Michael Crawford fronting INXS. Frankly they are hard to get away from and just as Michael Hutchins used to employ that “I really mean it when I say baby” tactic to add emotion, they are fairly soulless. Plasticine go through the motions of sounding like a traditional pop/rock band but by the end of it all you won’t care. Like Savage Garden everything is too pretty, too clinical, lacking humility and so middle of the road you could use them to paint the lines while they were there. Songs like “Never Trust the Angels” will have you banging your head against the wall and “The King of Hollywood” is so pompous it’s quite impressive. Rarely has such quality production been so misdirected.