Our lives are unending chaos, and our life’s work is to make it happen. As we slide into the downfall of western meritocracy, watching in real-time, with daily reminders of what happened a year ago, five years ago, ten years ago, it’s without question eroding our capacity to be happy with ourselves, or know who we are.
Virginia Wing have concerned themselves with the challenge of making something unique in 2020. That’s the whole story in a nutshell. Each of their previous records were made by a group unconcerned with creating and maintaining a brand. They’ve made the music that makes sense to them.
Virginia Wing is a group activity that is supportive, freeing and more than likely, the product of a co-dependent relationship. Cocky, dry, self-aware and immersed in their work; in any interaction with the group, they’ll bang on about therapy, midi koto, samplers, societal ills and popular culture with the fluidity only artists existing inside their material can. Having made Ecstatic Arrow in the romantic setting of alpine Switzerland in 2018, lavishing in the ambience and scenery, Virginia Wing have had to do what the rest of us have had to do in 2020, work from home in our jogging bottoms. However, they have again produced one of the year’s most daring and true pop records.
“Revelatory” Pitchfork ★★★★
“Genuinely transcendent” The Guardian ★★★★
“One of the year’s most original and exciting records” Loud & Quiet ★★★★
More tumultuous than its predecessor, private LIFE knocks hard. The evolution of Virginia Wing’s sound continues to build on the broad creative flow of the last album whilst being another audacious contribution to contemporary pop. The drums are huge and playfully unquantized. Edits are both assured and heavy handed, the instrumentation lightly mediates the two and finds itself on the edge of collapse alongside them. The icy facade of Merida Richards’ words are still front and centre, but are contrasted by dense arrangements, vying for attention throughout the record.
Over ‘I’m Holding Out For Something’s relentless juggernaut of 00’s Rn’B beats, Richards examines the relentless hope and desperation glued to modern consciousness, and speaks of how we often find the answer, or the route through, right at the breaking point. Subsequently, ‘St Francis Fountain’ compounds the issue, observing that often our own coping mechanisms can grow into full blown traumas of their own.
Virginia Wing’s last record opened its arms into euphoric light, private LIFE invites you through a door and closes it. It examines what we’re doing at night, on our own, after work. What we do to enjoy ourselves, to cope, to be together, to be alone. It shines a dim blue light on what might be happening, causing us anxiety, stress, and desire. The act of making the music, and that this music is bright, unconfined, and joyous, speaks to the inherent therapy in the activities some humans need to actually deal with the things inside their heads. However, it doesn’t position itself in opposition to anything, nor does it seek to guide. The album was made for Virginia Wing, and now it’s for you.
private LIFE is a record examining impulse, addiction, urge and shame and was influenced by the following:
Prince, Clare Fischer, Black Secret Technology, Laurie Anderson, YMO, Scott Storch, Timbaland, Nelly Furtado, Kleenex, The Slits, Y Pants, Tina Weymouth, Lena Platonos, Jay Electronica and The Paul Institute.
Virginia Wing is Alice Merida Richards, Sam Pillay and Christopher Duffin.
Out on limited Dinked edition hand numbered blue & black hand marbled vinyl with Poster (400 units only), standard LP and CD.
- I’m Holding Out For Something
- Moon Turn Tides
- Soft Fruit
- Michael Returns To The Garden
- 99 North
- Return To View
- St Francis Fountain
- Private Life
- Half Mourning
- Lucky Coin
- OBW Saints
- I Know About These Things