If you can’t figure out why I bought this record, scroll to the bottom of the post and check out the cover. It’s OK, I’ll wait.
See? This flat-out SCREAMS early 1980s. I picked this up a few weeks back when Mrs. Life in the Vinyl Lane and I staged a COVID jailbreak of sorts, heading over to the Olympic Peninsula and spending a couple of nights at a little vacation rental. Just getting out of the house after 15 weeks of work-from-home felt luxurious. And of course I checked our route on the off chance there were any record shops worth checking out, and lucky for me there was one – Quimper Sound Records in Port Townsend. When we walked in I looked around and assumed it would be mostly mainstream rock, and while there was plenty of that the selection of early 80s new wave and pop was strong as well, so I walked out with a bag full of stuff including Kliktrax With Foofi.
I found very little about this online other than a small ad placed in the December 22, 1984 issue of Billboard. That seems like such an odd thing to do today, but, you know, 36 years ago that was basically the only way to potentially get info about your band out there into the world if you weren’t on a major label. I also found a few more recent articles about Kilktrax member Danny “Colfax” Mallon (who is credited on the album as “Danny Mallon, aka Flex Tempo”, which is tremendous), but that’s pretty much it.
So how about the jams? The opener “I’m Not That Kind Of Girl” is the high point, its blend of simple synths and basic electronic drum beats anchoring it to the time period and giving Foofi (Marion Harriss Mallon) the chance to show off her voice a bit. It’s the spaciest song on the record, after which things settle into a bit more of a typical synth-based pop-rock album. The cover of Petula Clark’s “Downtown” is an odd choice there than that Foofi sounds a bit like Clark, and “Mannequin” does the best job in showing off Foofi’s range. I feel like pretty much any of these songs would have fit well into a John Hughes movie as part of some kind of supercut featuring a high schoolers going to class, or at the mall, or doing the other things they used to do before cell phones and the internet.
Clearly Kliktrax With Foofi is only going to appeal to fans of a certain style of 80s music, but if that’s you, then know that this is better than a lot of the major label stuff that came out around the same time, so don’t hesitate to pick up a copy.