|Virginia Wing — Ecstatic Arrow (2018)|
Virginia Wing — Ecstatic Arrow (June 8th, 2018)■? Forming in early 2012, Manchester (via London) based duo Virginia Wing take their name from Grace Slick’s mother. Virginia Wing have supported bands such as Metronomy, Hookworms and NZCA Lines, performed at Liverpool International Festival of Psychedelia, and are due to start their second headline European tour in early 2017. South London~based experimental pop band following closely in the footsteps of groups like Broadcast. Virginia Wing are a Manchester based group. Ecstatic Arrow was recorded by the duo in Switzerland at the home of longtime friend and collaborator Misha Hering, with the pair submitting themselves to the “domesticity and gentle routine of communal life” through the process.
■? “The Second Shift” is carried along as ever by Alice Merida Richards’ vocals sitting alongside a collection of brass instruments and synths.
Formed: March 28, 2012 in South London, London, England
Location: Manchester, UK
Genre: Adult Contemporary
Album release: June 8th, 2018
Record Label: Fire Records
01. Be Released 4:26
02. The Second Shift 3:02
03. Glorious Idea 4:26
04. Relativity 4:23
05. For Every Window There’s a Curtain 3:16
06. The Female Genius 3:49
07. Eight Hours Don’t Make A Day 3:51
08. A Sister 4:05
09. Pale Burnt Lake 4:16
10. Seasons Reversed 5:10
? Alice Merida Richards Vocals, Synths, Organ)
? Sam Pillay (Synths, guitar, noises, bass).
? Sebastian Truskolaski
■? “Virginia Wing are not from the sedate school of dream~pop escapism…a hazy subversion of the traditional monochrome evocations of post~punk, a photo negative of an established form.” — The Quietus
■? What the band says: “You shouldn’t worry about people wanting to see the bass player playing the bassline. It’d essentially be that thing of when you were watching pop bands as a kid, and they’d be playing to a backing track, but one of them would have a guitar, which was supposed to give the whole thing an air of legitimacy, but was really just bullshit. A performance can be anything you want it to be, we think.”
■? Our favourite records are the perfect counterbalance of the considered and the superficial. Whether it’s Madonna, Talking Heads or Holger Czukay — we enjoy these artists in the background with friends or profoundly and alone.
■? Virginia Wing both understand and embrace this concept fully as they return with Ecstatic Arrow, an album which finds them in a place of renewed strength, optimism and clarity.
■? Recorded in Switzerland, in the family home of longtime friend and collaborator Misha Hering within the domesticity and gentle routine of communal life, the album represents a world as predisposed to solemn introspection as it is to blithe conviviality.
■? Ecstatic Arrow borrows from the heterogeneous terrain of The Flying Lizard’s Fourth Wall, the exuberant technology assisted pop of Yellow Magic Orchestra and the playful sophistication of Lizzy Mercier Descloux’s Press Colour, arriving at the evergreen intersection of pop music and conceptual art.
■? The resolute opener of Be Released and album centre point The Female Genius pair resonant Fourth World instrumentation with sonorous, loping drum patterns. Elsewhere, the sentimental march of single The Second Shift plays out like an after~hours ballad re~imagined by Wally Badarou and For Every Window There’s a Curtain is coloured by the blue~lit haze of an Eventide warped tenor saxophone.
■? Three albums in, the voice of Alice Merida Richards is more compelling and expressive than ever. The glacial deadpan of previous records has given way to a more candid, self~possessed delivery, showing an appreciation for the humour and tragedy innate in the downtown Arcadia of Laurie Anderson, Robert Ashley or even Lynn Goldsmith’s Will Powers.
■? It’s with this voice that Richards outlines a simple ideality that fortifies the entirety of Ecstatic Arrow — inequality pervades, destructive behaviours are inherited and each subsequent generation has to reconcile the debts of its precursor — yet a space exists within ourselves and each other that houses a fact we must be reminded of — we have the ability to choose. Even in moments of frustration; the ascerbic eye~roll toward male entitlement, Glorious Idea or the world~weary Eight Hours Don’t Make a Day, there persists a joy for living that refuses to be confined.
■? A depiction of a group finally at ease with itself, Ecstatic Arrow is a tribute to the internal momentum that quietly guides us toward our destination.
|Virginia Wing — Ecstatic Arrow (2018)|