Comateens Danger Zone / Elizabeth’s Lover 12″

If you’re only familiar with COMATEENS’ mersh early/mid-’80s synth pop/new wave dance sound, this reissue of some of their earliest material will likely throw you for a bit of a loop. Bassist/vocalist Nick O. Teen (né Nick Dembling) takes the lead on “Danger Zone” (which was actually the B-side of COMATEENS’ debut 1979 single), and it’s more KBD than MTV; an almost VOIDOIDS-ish punk rave-up with the sort of effervescent, undeniably pure pop choruses that graced countless now-classic Ork Records singles. When guitarist/vocalist Ramona Jan left the band in 1980, she brought their unreleased track “Elizabeth’s Lover” along with her and soon re-recorded it with her new project DIZZY AND THE ROMILARS for their own debut 7”, but her take on it with COMATEENS is given the B-side here (replacing “Cool Chick,” the original A-side counterpart to “Danger Zone”). Much like the ROMILARS’ version, it’s a giddy hodgepodge of sugar-coated ’60s girl group melodies, fizzy power pop bounce, and high-gloss new wave, like an extremely synth-forward iteration of BLONDIE or NIKKI AND THE CORVETTES. I’m not sure that I fully understand the resource utility of a two-song 12” that’s over and done in less than six minutes (especially when one can still easily find the “Danger Zone” single for like $20), but COMATEENS completists and early New York new wave obsessives might beg to differ.