Review of Measures of Joy Album by Virginia Wing

South London based indie pop band Virginia Wing are not your average group. Their new album 'Measures of Joy', gives off an out of this world vibe from the very first track.

Virginia Wing Measures of Joy Album

The spacey style of each number practically screams peculiar. The band admitted themselves that they actively try and make music that's not what you'd call sweet. Job well done; each tune is stranger than the next and, with a heavy use of voice manipulation, strong bass throughout and concrete electronics, you want to hear everything it has to offer.

'Measures of Joy' surprises the listener. You find yourself listening to an array of experimental techniques, giving a never-ending sense of individuality. The album cover itself reflects its unusual contents. The abstract display of shapes and colours signifies its curious, intangible depiction of music.

The first track 'The Body Is a Clear Place' introduces the album with a sense of mysticism. Supernatural, trippy and bizarre, it is a perfect opener. You can get lost in thought when listening to it, only to be pulled back in by the hastier paced second track 'Estuary' which, while more brisk, still firmly provides the outlandish ambiance we have begun to expect. Each song provides its own identity - using a hallucinogenic range of experimental methods to do so. A tranquil use of imagery is used in 'First and Fourth', kites rising and falling in the wind, whereas in 'A Complex Outline', the subliminal message is similarly about breaking free.

Although the unique and bravely structured style is a positive change from previous releases, it is definitely an acquired taste. It takes a special brand of music lover to appreciate such a quirky style.  While there is plenty of individuality there, it's not altogether untrodden territory. 'Marnie' is reminiscent of 'Love is To Die' by Warpaint, as both share a similar soft yet unpredictable style of music.

Recorded at Holy Mountain Studios by Misha Hering and released through Fire Records, 'Measures of Joy' is a compilation of real talent. It's certainly not plain or ordinary, but that often poses accessibility problems. Nonetheless, if you want a mind-expanding experience, look no further.


Ruth Buxton-Cook

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