First Listen: Introflirt – Frozen Lace
- Frozen Lace Introflirt 4:40
Pulsating beats abound, Introflirt (love the name) make a very interesting album here. Self-described as “croonwave”, Introflirt indeed live up to their self-imposed genre. This is a well conceived variation on the pop and new wave fronts of the 80s with a soothing, crooning vocal stylings which make for a solid beat and heavenly melodies.
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This album represents the next stage of evolution in their self-described “croonwave” music. Dissolving notions of what electronic music should be in to a colorful flurry that pops and sparkles, this album is threaded together by a velvet voice and candid lyrics that touch on themes of disappointment in people, the fragility of relationships, and the path towards sexual liberation. True to Introflirt form, the songs on ‘Temporary Heaven’ maintain a delicate balance, offering the soundtrack to a life that is introverted while still reaching out.
The album’s first single ‘Frozen Lace’ was inspired by the struggle to overcome sexual repression, which generally goes hand in hand with some religions. It’s buzzing bass and squirming synth represent a tug-of-war between satisfying desires and fearing the potential consequences. Inspired by the concept that deciding between gratification or holding back entails excruciating self-torment, ‘Frozen Lace’ picks up on the lingering trepidation that moral laws often produce.
This was the first song to emerge for Introflirt after releasing their debut album. “This came from the longing to rid myself of guilt and fear of consequences when approaching certain desires,” explains vocalist and lyricist Ben Benjamin. “Growing up in a religious family – although my parents have pretty much been kicked out of every church they ever attended – installed many programs I’ve worked hard to disassemble.”
While Introflirt’s self-titled debut album documented the group testing the Flirty waters, the eight-track ‘Temporary Heaven’ jumps in without inhibition. The album retains the raw, gritty synth pop that endeared so many listeners to their debut release – but adds a seedier, darker, more danceable attitude, taking the Introflirt party from the rooftop to the basement.
While ‘Temporary Heaven’ presents Introflirt with a more energetic, modern feel, what stands out most is the transformation of Ben Benjamin’s vocals. After spending countless weekends in piano bars performing jazz standards, Benjamin’s vocal presence enters a similar space inhabited by the lounge singers of the 40s, 50s, and 60s, but set in the hazy, dim light of dance club beats.
Reinventing pop song structures to reflect the unpredictable nature of life’s twists and turns, the songs on this album present a clarity and confidence that’s a little bit dark, a little bit sentimental, and very very flirty.
“Slow creeping synth and infectious beat, together with words that are as addictively seedy as anything you’ll find on “Non-Stop Erotic Cabaret”, Soft Cell’s groundbreaking album” – The Spill Magazine
“Never thought I’d say crooner, sexual, eclectic and synthtastic in the same phrase, but Introflirt combines all these things” – The Record Stache
“They are a formidable duo that is creating music that is both commanding and sexy as hell.” – Strawberry Tongue Radio
“What we like so much about Introflirt, is that their music is everything we love. Dark but still glittering, dreamy synths, and heavy grooves. The lyrics vibrate with sensuality. And it is then, just then, we fall head over heels.” – What Else Is There Blog
“Benjamin’s dusky croon is paired with layers of buzzing, undulating and cascading synths and propulsive and forceful drum beats to create a moody and track which evokes a creeping, dread-filled anxiety” – The Joy of Violent Movement
“Beautiful melodies… A fine, delicate and expressive work, keeping the typical style of the crude synth pop” – ZoneNights