StoneWall Society LOGO
CD Review

Rubberlegs' "The Timinator Boyfriends, Volume I" CD cover and link to the Rubberlegs website. RUBBERLEGS:
"The Timinator: Boyfriends, Vol. 1" 
CD Review by Jed Ryan   

     From the "Tron"-influenced artwork on the cover of "The Timinator: Boyfriends, Vol. 1", the sophomore CD release from downtown NYC cult group Rubberlegs, the innocent listener-to-be may suspect that he's in for something outside of the confines of safe and harmless aural entertainment.  He's right.  Not content to fit into any predesigned category or to be lumped with any other so-called "cookie-cutter stagnabands", Rubberlegs has created a whole new genre for their captivating style of pop music.  The current, newly energized incarnation of the group-- Gordon Smith (AKA "Peg Rubberleg", synth and lead vocals) Bunny Lake (synth and vocals), and Anthony Maulella (percussion)-- weren't just 

influenced by the so-called alternative, new-wave sounds of the '80s (Think Depeche Mode, OMD, and The Flying Lizards-- but don't think about them too long...).  They lived the era-- big hair and all.  Pop music from that generation-- where Pac-Man and Rubik's cube were worshipped as the new gods-- was often criticized for relying too much on electronic special effects, presumably taking away from the "human" or "organic" aspects of the music.  Rubberlegs boldly defies that criticism, proudly indulging in a variety of electronic clicks, whirrs, blips, chirps, space age-influenced musical nuances, and other outrageous sound effects: human, non-human, and in-between.  Using the alternative music that they lived through, and the electronic alchemy that they continue to create, a new genre has emerged: Alt.tronica.  "The Timinator: Boyfriends, Vol. 1" may evoke the gayest, most personal album that The Pet Shop Boys never made.  A big difference is that those British boys' unique sound was characterized by Neil Tennant's steely, distant delivery, as if even his vocal chords were synthetically created by a computer as well.  In other words, when singing immortal phrases like "I love you, you pay my rent...", his voice wasn't exactly high on old-fashioned sentiment or emotion.  After you become familiar with Rubberlegs' music, you can have fun imagining Gordon Smith singing those same lyrics with his truly irreplaceable vox, and you'll note the difference.  The album's calling card, "The Timinator", matches the presumed larger-than-life persona of its subject ("No one is immune from 'The Timinator'!") with appropriately over-the-top lyrics and musical effects-- and some double entendres thrown in. When Gordon croons, "He came in from the farthest left field", one has to wonder if he's talking about politics or softball, given the Timinator's real-life inspiration's love of the sport.  There are three versions of the track on this album, all of which are characteristically hard-hitting and infectious.  Another featured Rubberlegs favorite in the making is "Bound and Gagged", an unorthodox love song which describes that gray area between commitment ring on your finger and ball 'n' chain around your leg: "When doing thing as alone, you can't escape the phone; It haunts you everywhere, won't you stay out of my hair? I want to get some work done, You want to have your quirk fun..." Rubberlegs groupies may declare, "But wait!  Wasn't this song on their first album, 'Leg Warmers, Reheated'?"  Yes, it most assuredly was-- but as more astute fans of the group already know, that song was never officially completed.  This finalized product alters the original's mid-tempo version just slightly, with a more ethereal, dreamy, and (dare I say) romantic sound.   A more sparse version of "Bound and Gagged" (the Chafe Mix) also appears on the CD, pointing out that Gordon's voice can indeed stand on its own.

     As their fans know, Rubberlegs' live performances are just as high in energy as their album offerings, and to prove it, "The Timinator: Boyfriends, Vol. 1" features a live version of one of Rubberlegs' emblematic classics, "People Who Talk in Elevators", complete with the song's trademark quirky vocalizations.  "Lawnchairs", one of the last new wave hits from the '80's (from the group Our Daughter's Wedding in 1981) that hasn't been yet discovered (and subsequently exploited...) for a commercial for Old Navy or Target, also gets the live treatment here.  This time, Bunny Lake gets the lead vocals and, the listener will agree, he does the job very well, capturing that a somewhat enigmatic aura so often employed by the alterna-pop performers of the '80's.  The EP closes with a steely, almost vocal-free version of "The Timinator".

     The two weapons in Rubberlegs' all-out war on musical banality are Gordon Smith's voice, bordering between soulful and transcendental (Some may say, perhaps more appropriately, "otherworldly"), and Rubberlegs' high-tech musical mastery, courtesy of all three of these gents (Some may say, perhaps more appropriately, "sick puppies").  But underneath the natural talents of these three guys, and the endless bag of electronic tricks on the album, at the heart of the title track "The Timinator" is a sweet, classically simple boy-boy love story.  And isn't it about time we had one? Granted, its questionable whether the real-life inspiration for the song can melt ice caps with just his presence, like his superhero alter ego... but there's little doubt that he inspired his petit ami Gordon to start making music again.  And for that, we can all thank "The Timinator". 

     You won't be immune from the charms of "The Timinator: Boyfriends, Vol. 1".  Buy this CD-- and check out more about Rubberlegs-- at .

Jed Ryan
PM Entertainment Magazine

Return to Rubberlegs Wing Entrance.

Return to GLBT Artists

The  only GLBT Music ranking Chart Online Since 1996! Support GLBT Music vote for your favorite GLBT Artists.
StoneWall Society Network Member!

Receive our FREE monthly newsletter

Equal Pride

Subscribe Here

StoneWall Society free web-based email, 6megs of space.

Email login:


Login, or get your account today!

Site Map

StoneWall Society


Resource Area

Home StoneWall Productions Resource  
Pledge Job Fair GLBT Web Reviewers 
Detailed Site Guide SWS Community Awards Program Web/Internet Tools
Business Members MountAroma  
Friends of StoneWall Society GLBT Petitions
Why Research and Student Assistance Program  
Favorite Sites  GLBT Web Site Reviews

History and Reference

Reading Room

SWS GLBTI Artists Promotion

StoneWall Webring GLBT Artists Free Promo Service GLBT Symbols
Member Webrings GLBT Artists   *** GLBT Famous Persons 
Link to Us   SWS Art World  Archives  *** and NEW
Contact Us Pride In The Arts Awards


Press Releases Our Awards


  Award Recipients  
Equality Alert  

Member Related

Awards Received
NewsRoom Member Site of the Month Older site program

Media & Entertainment

Travel   Previous Member Sites of the month. Older site program SWS Internet Radio
Jacy's Page Members' This & That Older site program GLBT Radio   ***
StoneWall Society Zine About the founder, Len Rogers Activities
Privacy Policy   Chat

*** = Updated      N = NEW


Site opened 10/31/99

StoneWall Society 10/99 - 2012