A series of sensual kisses and caresses on the senses masquerading as songs, the debut album from London and Rome based electronic pop band Shirleysaid, is one of those fine and elegant whispers it is hard to refuse. Metro Lovers is a release which does not ignite raging fires within but has them smouldering with contentment whilst flames of delight lick with joy throughout the evocative journey and soundscapes the release holds ones hand within.
The band bio says the band is ‘a visionary artist ensemble: composers / multi-instrumentalists / producers / sound designer; their music is a dreamlike journey into sensual, provocative and hypnotic electro-avant-pop.’ It is a description which is accurate though does not do justice to their ability to create emotive worlds with cinematic textures. From diverse musical backgrounds, the band has composed pieces for film, TV, and animated shorts whilst also presented improvisations at photographic and art exhibitions. Their music though is just as comfortable as individual and singular pop songs as their album easily proves. Formed in Italy in 2002, ShirleySaid is a band to awaken emotions and thoughts whilst whisking the heart off into heated delights and shadowed pleasures.
Opening with the crystalline instrumental B Lust, a track which sets the scene without any real revelation of what is to follow, the album soon has its mesmeric charms seducing the ear with Rolling Star. It is a gentle tease which shimmers with melodic warmth and sways with glittering harmonies and vocals from Giulia Scarantino. Without instigating any fiery rapture the song lights the atmosphere to fully hold eager attention. The guitars offer a great discord to their gait, a feature throughout the album which entices persistently alongside the dazzling electro presence and vocal glamour.
Songs like Merry-Go-Round, Londoners, and Documents, build upon and deepen the hypnotic pull of the album. The first has a fuzzy heat which slightly blisters, its electronic fingering a salty rub, whilst the last brushes over the ear with a rough yet tender touch punctuated with beats which stir up the ambience wrapped around it all. The middle track is one of the highlights of the album, an eighties electro pop flavoured song bringing essences of Depeche Mode and Blancmange into a provocative mix with spices of Metric. It is a stunning track with a slightly sinister beauty and seductive heart where once again the vocals of Scarantino spawn adoration.
Songs like Zones and Posterize Me without reaching previous heights still continue the balmy attraction whilst others such as the New Order tasting Rubik and the delicious Shapes In The Distance, transport one into a bubble of imagination and emotive fascination.
Metro Lovers is a delicate treat yet with a strength and bite to arouse the listener throughout its captivating company. Shirleysaid create music to light up the day and take one away from the stresses of life it is now up to you to welcome their embrace.
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