Action Action - An Army of Shapes Between Wars (Cover Artwork)

Action Action

Action Action: An Army of Shapes Between WarsAn Army of Shapes Between Wars (2006)
Victory Records

Reviewer Rating: 2
User Rating:

Contributed by: InaGreendaseBrian
(others by this writer | submit your own)

Action Action provided a fairly decent new wave / dance rock combination on their debut, Don't Cut Your Fabric to This Year's Fashion. While their followup here, An Army of Shapes Between Wars, is certainly more ambitious and carefully crafted, what it results in is an awfully boring and long affair.
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Action Action provided a fairly decent new wave / dance rock combination on their debut, Don't Cut Your Fabric to This Year's Fashion. While their followup here, An Army of Shapes Between Wars, is certainly more ambitious and carefully crafted, what it results in is an awfully boring and long affair with bordering-on-annoying amounts of keyboard and very few hooks.

Rising and falling action used to be a subtle trait with Action Action's songcraft; it was present in Fabric, but you had to keep an ear out for it. Here it's almost completely absent, partially due to Mark Kluepfel forgoing nearly any range in his usually emotionless voice, deadpanning all-too-apt lines like "Half of what I say is bliss / The other half is meaningless" ("A Tornado; An Owl"); his lazy affectation simply sounds medicinal. Songs like this tend to meander about, adding pointless filler amounts of dragging guitar and noise.

High points on the disc include "The Game" with its power-pop shine and "Sleep Paralysis," where Kluepfel is actually singing with some expression and the chorus is fairly catchy. Even the latter, however, ends with an interlude-ish minute and a half of programmed drums and Casio keyboard tones. The acoustic guitar and mock choir in "120 Ways..." is a nice touch, too.

I'm thankful I didn't have much hope invested in Action Action's full-length no. 2 here, because for all I was nodding towards I'm returned a terribly mediocre, hour-long display of indirection.

The Game
Paper Cliché

The Game


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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
crazytoledo (January 14, 2007)

Yeah, parts of this album are a little bit too overbearing and played out, but there are a number of enjoyable moments throughout. It's something you can't just listen too on it's own, but an album that you listen to while doing something.

Anonymous (June 16, 2006)

I really like this album. It's a little different then everything else.

Anonymous (February 26, 2006)

Joy Division and New Order MOST CERTAINLY were good. Ther're goddamn excellent excellent bands. That said, lame bands like this sound nothng like them and shouldn't be lumped together.

feeeding5000 (February 26, 2006)

I'm REALLY not qualified to comment on this, but, FUCK!!!! Why does Victory feel the need to put out bands that aren't even remotely hardcore? Is it greed?
Also, why do people try to emulate Joy Division and New Order? They weren't good in the first place. New Wave dance-pop is not, nor has ever been necessary.

Anonymous (February 24, 2006)

This feels overly STUDIO. The songs lack substance and it feels thrown together. Yuck.

Anonymous (February 24, 2006)

the reunion show was a thousand times better than this band based on their live show alone.

i've never seen a band go as nuts as the reunion show used to. very entertaining.

action, action, however, is not.

ryan_e34 (February 24, 2006)

Has anyone heard The Autumn Offering cd yet...the song "Revelation" is pretty good ...just think we should get a review soon..instead of this boring shit

Anonymous (February 24, 2006)

this cd and the title just sounds like they go to far out of thier way to try to be diffrent and wierd. its like all these new bands are having a contest to see who can make the most obscure titles kind of a drag

Testiclese (February 24, 2006)

shitty are work wtf

Anonymous (February 24, 2006)

the first album was infinitely better and the standouts brian notes above are rather unfortunate.

xrobotcorex (February 24, 2006)

There's only two things I don't like about Action Action...
1. Victory Records
2. Victory's marketing strategy for them ("If you like The Killers, The Faint, etc...")

I actually enjoyed this, it's a more mature direction but still has all the indie/new wave sensibilities of the first album.

The name "Action, Action" is supposed to be ironic, right?

Yeah, Mark had some weird explanation in their interview with AMP that just came out.

Anonymous (February 24, 2006)

Brian... do the kids really want to read a review of this?


Give us the Duff. At least that will be somewhat interesting. This, on the other hand, is just confusing. WHY WHY WHY?

Anonymous (February 24, 2006)

Thanks for the disclaimer Will, I thought you were talking about the power violence Killers.

Anonymous (February 24, 2006)

I wanted to like this album. I REALLY enjoyed their debut. I only like 3 or 4 songs on this one though. It just goes nowhere.

givemeamuseumandillfillit (February 24, 2006)

I liked the reunion show, they had a few catchy pop gems.
This however is the most forced album i've ever heard.

Anonymous (February 24, 2006)


Anonymous (February 24, 2006)

The name "Action, Action" is supposed to be ironic, right?

Vincent_M (February 24, 2006)

I 2nd the fact that it's possibly the worst cover art evar.

TheNightProwler (February 24, 2006)

Is it possible for this site to create a negative star system just especially for releases from Victory Records?

Godfather (February 24, 2006)

score is for victory records

Anonymous (February 24, 2006)

I still listen to the Killers. And the Faint.

Anonymous (February 24, 2006)

Any bets on what style these guys are going to trendwhore themselves out to next?

Anonymous (February 24, 2006)

the reunion show was more entertaining

Anonymous (February 24, 2006)

I can't help but laugh viciously at the agony these posers must be going through as their trend is dying before their very eyes. I mean, just a year and a half ago, all you needed was the right stylist, some keyboards, and a shitty singer, and you could cash in on the much-unneeded dance-pop revival.

Now what's left of it? I can't think of a single person who still listens to The Killers (and I'm talking about the crappy dance pop band, not the power violence Killers).

Repetition in band names and terrible music go hand in black finger nail polished hand. Now go sell your make up and pretend you like indie.


Bowen (February 24, 2006)

This was the Reunion Show right?

Anonymous (February 24, 2006)

worst cover art ever

etwiels88 (February 24, 2006)

band was actually entertaining live, but boring as fuck on record

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