The Eurythmics perfected the formula: the dude who stands in back, tinkering with the equipment, fronted by a chanteuse oozing icy mystery. Eric Smith and Shannon Alexander play Dave and Annie in Adrenaline Sky -- a Denver duo whose full-length, The Ultimate Illusion of Privacy, hints at the Brit-pomp of the Eurythmics while slipping in slivers of trance and electro. Beneath all the layers of phaser and synth, Adrenaline Sky has some serious songwriting installed; Alexander's voice would be equally at home alongside an acoustic or enmeshed in Smith's cybernetic contraptions. Not all the tracks are winners, though. "Adrenaline Sky" is a theme song as cheesy as Big Country singing about being in a big country, and the quasi-industrial riff that juts out of "Drowning Shadows" sounds like Nine Inch Nails hammered in crooked. But overall, the disc (whose release will be celebrated Saturday, March 12, at the Paramount Cafe) is a promising debut by two talented musicians who dodge the retro pigeonhole -- by sounding like they never completely left the '80s in the first place.
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