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Actve Captve - Last Forever (NXPCTD RCRDS)

19 January 2024

At the moment, there is a strong 80s revival going on, not just in music but in the media in general. Music is, of course, cyclical, and it is only natural that some of the sounds from the past surface in the music of today; but it doesn’t hurt that films such as Ready Player One and shows like Stranger Things have made the period popular again.

Actve Captve’s latest single, “Last Forever” has no small amount of that era’s sound echoing through it, and what makes this slight reimagining of the past better than most is that it stays closer to the 80’s that I remember. Modern revivalists would have you believe that it was a time dominated by synth bands and cheesy pop, but “Last Forever” reminds us that it was also an era of polished rock bands and post-punk inventiveness, new wave creativity, and a time when many, previously underground, bands became household names.

A lot of those different sounds and styles can be found to be the driving force behind Actve Captve’s sound. That deft blend of pop and rock, of guitar traditions and synth potential, a collision point between digital and analog, the old and the new, what was and what will be. And of course, Actve Captve has one thing its side that those early pioneers didn’t, forty years of further invention, ideas, influence and infusion, and that is what keeps the song feeling the perfect interface of the past and the present.

The familiarity of what has gone before mixed, melded, and merged perfectly with the freshness of the here and now. Brilliant.