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  • David Bentley

TOM and His Computer – Puzzle (ft. Roxy Jules) (single from forthcoming debut album)

Thomas Bertelsen aka TOM and His Computer comes to NMR courtesy of the German label HFN Music, whose other Danish artists Jacob Bellens, Blaue Blume and Lydmor have previously featured, too. Bertelsen is a live band member with (Anders) Trentemøller, a Danish indie/electronic music composer, producer and multi-instrumentalist based in Copenhagen but often does his own thing as TOM.

Known for his retro-futuristic noisy edginess as heard on two previous EPs, TOM And His Computer is set to release his debut album in October 2020 on Trentemøller’s label In My Room.

Roxy Jules (Julie Runa) is another Danish artist, evidently influenced by P J Harvey and Sonic Youth, and who got a glowing review from NMR for her fourth album.

I think that pretty well completes the introductions. I’m not quite sure how to read the PR but it suggests this is a remix of the original by Trentemøller. That would make sense as TOM graduated from beginnings as a DJ and his usual style is somewhat more electronic than this. With Roxy’s vocal contribution that makes it a trilogy of artists in the credits.

While I’m not particularly a fan of psych music I do like it when it gets hitched on to a driving, bass-thumping rock track like this, or perhaps this is just because of Trentemøller’s interpretation and the original is quite different.

Whatever, it prompts me to think of Paul Oakenfield’s ‘Ready Steady Go’, the soundtrack to the Korean club scene in the film Collateral, the best hit-man movie ever made and Tom Cruise’s finest hour by far. Not because the two sound alike but because ‘Puzzle’ has the same vibe and could equally have been used as that soundtrack. It has a sort of sleaziness about it. I hope the participants won’t take that comment the wrong way!

The black and white music video is by Benitha Vlok, who often works with TOM, and kindly reminds us how people used to travel around Paris sans un face mask, at a distance of deux metres from tout le monde, and avoiding touching anything. Jours joyeux. Merci beaucoup.

Find him on Bandcamp. And Facebook


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