Creating flights of sultry enigmatic bewitchments, smouldering arcane blues swept electronic enchantments which evoke unique adventures in the imagination each and every time, electronic blues duo Vienna Ditto unveil their finest, most potent seduction with the Ugly EP. The three track release travels the psyche and emotions with a sublime soaked enterprise bred by a blend of country blues and gospel influenced ‘voodoo electronics’. It is a transfixing venture through sweltering evocative climes and across magnetic aural sunspots which gloriously mesmerise from start to finish.
Vienna Ditto consists of Hatty Taylor and Nigel Firth, a pair who first met when the latter started teaching the former guitar when she was 11 years old. The couple lost touch after a couple of years but met again by chance in the street in 2009, and within a week of reconnecting they recorded an electronic version of the Johnny Cash classic Ring of Fire, and their own composition Long Way Down within another a week of that. The second track found itself on Huw Stephens’ Radio One show which was followed by an appearance on the BBC Introducing stage at Glastonbury Festival and further radio exposure. Their self-titled EP of 2011 and following singles through to this year has intensified the acclaim and attention upon the band, each a fresh and vibrant exploration of a sound which is distinct and imaginatively unique to Vienna Ditto, a strength which the Ubiquity Project Records Ugly steps forward with to worry new plateaus of excellence.
The title track seduces ears and thoughts first, its opening celestial electronic wash instantly offering a suggestion of Vangelis before coming to a halt to allow fiery guitar strokes to deliciously aggravate the senses and appetite alongside pulsating beats and a rockabilly temptation embracing the delicious tones of Taylor, this switch the first example of the band’s ingenuity within a torrential majesty of unpredictable imagination. Firmly into its creative weave all textures and essences merge to sculpt an incendiary and haunting expanse of atmospherically sweltering mystery. There is a feel of Saint Agnes to the flames which lick at the enthralling narrative vocally and musically whilst the increasingly bedlamic electronic teases tantalise and ignite potent exploits in the mind and passions.
The following By Way of Apology immediately caresses emotions through the vocal cradling of Taylor, it a sirenesque beauty within similarly emotive sonic invention from and the craft of Firth. The sound conjured envelops the senses, casting a canvas which the bewitching Taylor exploits and makes full use of to romance the narrative of the piece and the listener’s imagination. The Portishead like elegance of the song as well as the steamy ambience makes another exploration in the closing track Stop. There is a sixties pop sorcery whispering from inside its woven electro and emotive wash providing another unhurried tender engagement which kisses and woos every aspect of the body and soul with a melodic alchemy and irresistible skilled sway.
Listening to Ugly is like walking through the soundtracks of unpolluted shadow soaked adventures of the heart, emotive travelogues across noir lit or sweltering climes which initially hold their secrets close to their chests but open up to the sirenesque call and bait of Vienna Ditto. The EP is simply scintillating and the band the fruitful hypnotic future of synth/blues pop.
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