Recommended If You Like: Grimes, Depeche Mode, Ladytron, George Clanton
Visualize yourself stumbling off the beaten path late at night in NYC into a dark, rave-induced, nightclub with bass inspiration blaring through the speakers and a dark shadow up on stage radiating silky-soft, feminine vocals that encompass dreamy, electro soundscapes proving to be only hypnotizing but tranquilly inviting as well. The colorful strobe lights laser past the mysterious DJ multitasking up on a club stage, who also persistently delivers an original yet ‘90s nostalgic, house presence to the audience in a way that is intelligently organized and impressively expressive in all aspects of the seemingly faded genre.
Lindsey French is revealed as the DJ and mastermind solo artist/producer behind Negative Gemini. She also co-founded her label 100% Electronica with her electronic artist boyfriend, George Clanton where they currently reside in Brooklyn. With two EPs behind her belt and on now onto her second album Body Work, (released earlier in 2016) the world is officially exposed to the genius behind her creative and stimulating technique.
The album begins with the track “No Rum” that sounds like a mix of laid back lounge beats with funky sound samples peaking through at the end and immediately interludes into “Rollercoaster” which quickly feels like a wild breath of fresh air. It’s light, sweet, sparkly, and makes you want to crank the knob and prepare to start dancing. When “Break” pushes through next, you’re forcibly exposed into the real old techno club world experience. If only for a moment, you’re brought back in time to the ‘90s rave scene; late nights, sweat pouring, jumping around and pumping bass that takes over you. One favorite amongst of fans that certainly remind you of a time techno pop took over the radio, “Body Work” has the most lyrics on the album so far, but it doesn’t make it any less energetic than any of the other tracks. With desperation she sings in a luring and glamorous tone repeatedly “Need you baby.” In this song French really attempts at trying different singing styles, heaped with her obvious pleasure of ominous sounds. Then quite possibly one of the most lyrically entailed, addictive tracks of the whole album is the well-formed, melancholy dream pop inspired song “You Never Knew,” where French tells a story of abandonment and discloses the true pain and anguish encountered through her emotionally charged lyrics. At the beginning of the song she delicately sings “You only hate the ones you love,” which is ironic and unforgettable (in its own right) and certainly prompts the listener to think. But the dainty yet epic intensity, mixed with the otherworldly voice sample combination is what really pulls you into her unmatched pop melodies.
Hold my breath I’m going under
[You Never Knew, You Never Knew] Running till until I fall down
[You Never Knew, You Never Knew] Feel you slipping through my fingers
You never knew, you never knew
All the times I needed you
[You Never Knew, You Never Knew]
After feeling happy, perplexed and somewhat emotionally drained, French slaps you out of it and picks you back up with her stern yet playful position in “Don’t Worry Bout The Fuck I’m Doing,” fearlessly expressing her distaste in walking down the streets of New York while being annoyed by catcallers.
I don’t care about your shit face
The street goes down two ways
French is unafraid and unapologetic in her efforts to give the listeners her moods and mindsets in creating powerful lyrics backed up by spacey synth sounds and programmed drumming. Be prepared to feel exposed to good old club nostalgia when listening to “Nu Hope,”, “Real Virtual Unison (Fake Edit),”, “Infinity,” and the subsequent darker trance track “Ego Death.” But as usual and throughout the album, it’s apparent that you’re taken on an adventure of highs and lows with the last two tracks being “Hold U (Break Your Face Edit),” and finally “You Only Hate the Ones You Love.” The last and ultimate track that closes with “You Only Hate the Ones You Love,” is a toned down, slower version of “You Never Knew,” which graciously offers versatility to the original track and directly re-celebrates it while further reinforcing her perspective in this crazy world.
Negative Gemini’s album Body Work may remind you of ‘90s nightclub nostalgia, but it’s clear-as-day given the complexity of her lyrics, the messages conveyed behind them and the modern twist she effortlessly infiltrates, that there is much more to grasp beyond the genre’s superficial sound. She’s a force to be reckoned with, and distinctly brings boldness, integrity and poise to the forefront in this album’s quest for self-actualization and complacency.
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