Catalog #: AHE-17
Format: 7" Vinyl/Digital
Release date: 2012
A: Electric Eyes
B: Swamp Thing
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AHE-17 VIRGINIA PLAIN – Electric Eyes b/w Swamp Thing – 7″: $5
The Electric Eyes single is the debut recording from the “tech-noir” group, Virginia Plain, fronted by Alfra Martini with support from Fono Luxe members: Justin Miller, Christian Reinhardsen and Robert Boston.
The A side, “Electric Eyes”, is a classic song sharing musical ties with synth pop pioneers OMD and the ’50′s crooner vocal stylings of Bryan Ferry. The song kicks off with Martini’s voice gliding over bumping synth bass and 808 drum claps bringing to mind the melancholic pop sound of classic ’80′s hits like Q Lazzurus’ “Goodbye Horses”. Martini’s penchant for rhythmic phrasing and picaresque lyrics maximizes the irresistibility of the melody. When the chorus hits, a choir of voices joins her rich vibrato providing a lush backdrop to the lyric “The symphony of ecstasy shatters all your fantasy, do you recall a certain doll that loved you more than this?”
“Swamp Thing” is the shadowy twin to Martini’s bright faced “Electric Eyes”. With it’s relentless Sisters of Mercy style beat and minor key synth lines the atmosphere turns from dreamy to sinister. Incorporating a harder beat that allows for some twisted turns of phrase, Martini changes character with the sultry sung lyric “Get your engines on, the queen is dead, you can’t synchronize if you lose your head, so play on!” Channeling punk chanteuse Siouxsie Sioux and the darker moments of Eurythmics’ vocalist Annie Lennox, Martini’s vocal delivery moves from a whisper to a scream. The song fades to a close with an instrumental passage of spiraling synths and sharply bowed strings, courtesy of cellist Anna Callner. With a whole album of songs already underway this single is just a teaser for great things to come.
-7″ is limited to 200 copies and comes with a download card.
“Sophisticated, night-people synth pop from NYC… two electro-cabaret songs with big, full arrangements and deep roots in the after-after party dramatics of Bryan Ferry and co. Martini keeps things on ice (so nice), because you can’t expect the party to keep going if the drinks get warm.”
-Doug Mosurock (Still Single/Dusted Magazine)
“Virginia Plain’s debut comes off as a Roland 808-driven neo-gloom disco single with goth pop glam vocals. The production on this record is impressive, as is the song writing and instrumentation, leaving both tracks to take infinite turns side up as my favorite.”
-I Must Find Atlantis
“This sultry echo vocal from Alfra Martini is right in the center of the spotlight and is the perfect idea of a prom band like the one at Better Off Dead, EG Daily, not done with any irony or glitch, pulling off a real track in the Siousxie style pop goth, a little bit of a snarl in that attitude.”