Back to the Bay for today.

An arty post-punk combo from San Francisco that put electronics at the forefront of their sound, but in a way not quite as dirty and barbed as other synth experimentalists of the era and scene, like Chrome. Tuxedomoon tended to be cleaner and smoother, a sort of convergence of Kraftwerk and Roxy Music—with plenty of sax and violin thrown in for extra color.

Singer Winston Tong, a theatrical, big presence, has the delivery of a gothic Robert Fripp or Alan Parsons—or, in more straightforward terms, of Peter Murphy—and brings binding to the oil-and-water arrangements that can be difficult to follow when they're laid bare.

The band migrated to Belgium at some point, where it seems they settled into place a little more naturally, though perhaps at the cost of their creative spark; their later efforts can feel bloodless, thin, and pretentious.

I quite enjoy some of what violinist Blaine L. Reininger got into on his own, despite his tendency to be rather snide, snooty.

And Tong tried his hand at the solo thing, too, releasing Theoretically Chinese on Les Disques Du Crépuscule in '85. The record's a surprisingly fun and snazzy dance pop affair, though some of that might be a result of New Order's Steve Morris being the drummer, Magazine's Dave Formula being the keyboardist, Jah Wobble being the bassist, A Certain Ratio's Simon Topping being a percussionist, and the Associates' Alan Rankine being the producer. At times, it's a little too much—overcooked and dry, and Tong can sound a little lonely in the mix—but it's a pleasurable trip peppered with accents and twists that make it more than just a pretty package.