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Working Class Woman (2018)

Marie Davidson

... read moreMarie Davidson's first album for Ninja Tune is far more outgoing than her previous releases, in addition to being more introspective. Earlier albums such as Perte D'Identité were filled with seductive, deadpan spoken lyrics in French and English over murky, lo-fi darkwave tracks, with the tempo...

Review

Marie Davidson's first album for Ninja Tune is far more outgoing than her previous releases, in addition to being more introspective. Earlier albums such as Perte D'Identité were filled with seductive, deadpan spoken lyrics in French and English over murky, lo-fi darkwave tracks, with the tempo significantly increasing on 2016's Adieux au Dancefloor, as well as the albums Essaie Pas (Davidson's duo with partner Pierre Guerineau) released on DFA. Working Class Woman continues in the direction of the Essaie Pas material as well as "Emails 2 Myself," Davidson's brutal, outstanding collaboration with Solitary Dancer. Her observations are sharper and funnier than before, and the album's sound design is much more daring and articulate. On opening piece "Your Biggest Fan," she pokes fun at herself, as well as the state of life as a performing artist. The more ethereal "Day Dreaming" is a much starker reflection of the loneliness of touring life. "Work It" is a cheeky ode to the pursuit of success, with Davidson acting as a motivational coach over a stripped-down yet muscular, driving beat. "The Psychologist" is a rhythmic therapy session, amplifying the voices in Davidson's head which are constantly telling her that she's crazy. "The Tunnel" goes further over the edge, with Davidson gasping, wheezing, and shouting about crawling through a tunnel filled with broken glass over a fittingly nightmarish industrial hellscape. Following the tense, knotty instrumental "Workaholic Paranoid Bitch," Davidson drops the most blissful, accessible song she's ever written. "So Right" is an extremely catchy club anthem featuring Davidson's most ecstatic vocal performance, with lyrics expressing pure, unbridled euphoria. With greater emotional depth and sonic clarity than her past recordings, Working Class Woman is an exciting breakthrough for Davidson. ~ Paul Simpson

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