Earlier this year Welsh recording artist Marina and the Diamonds released their second studio album Electra Heart. It was produced by 679 Artists and Atlantic Records, and Diamondis worked with a variety of record producers such as Liam Howe and Greg Kurstin, Dr. Luke, Diplo and Stargate.
In the UK, Electra Heart debuted at number one on the UK Albums Chart with an impressive 21,358 copies sold in the first week alone. This became Diamondis’s first number-one album. In continental Europe, Electra Heart reached number eleven in Switzerland, number seventeen in Germany, and ended up at number thirty one in the US Billboard 200.
Electra Heart is all about a brand new persona – Electra – a young woman who dreams of living the perfect American life as she battles through Hollywood with images of fame, success and power constantly in her mind. The album overall is quite infectious and catchy; there’s no doubt that you’ll find yourself singing along on more than one occasion, but on the other hand it’s also quite dark and sometimes depressing.
With lines such as “super, super, super, suicidal” in ‘Teen Idol’ to “Deception, perfection are wonderful traits” in ‘Home wrecker’ it’s almost like Marina doesn’t know how to be happy. Overall, the best parts of the album are when Marina is wearing her heart on her sleeve; when she’s singing about delicate situations that she may or may not have gone through herself. Take ‘Lies’ for example; “You only ever touch me in the dark, only if we’re drinking can you see my spark”. Diamondis reveals sadness and heartache, telling a thousand untold stories behind her words.
Marina describes the album as “a really cinematic 70s Americana-type film”, divided into three parts. The album is centred around the character Electra Heart, who isn’t an alter ego but rather as Diamondis said “it’s kind of basically a vehicle to portray part of the American dream, with elements of Greek tragedy and that’s all going to be coming out through the visuals.”
Electra Heart is soulful, with a variety of elements that will keep you hooked. Marina’s passionate vocals make the songs come alive, and that is what makes this album a class act.
Marina and the Diamonds: Electra Heart 4 out of 5