If you've yet to experience Marie Davidson's music as a solo artist then it's possible you may have encountered her on the Constellation label as a member of Essaie Pas, Land Of Kush or Les Momies de Palerme (amongst others). 'Working Class Woman', her fourth solo full-length, arrives on Ninja Tune and is the Montreal-based artist's most introspective and visceral work to date. Her sound absorbs influences from Italo Disco, proto-industrial, minimal synth and electro which she moulds into her own distinctive vision.
LP £18.49 ZEN250
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CD £9.99 ZENCD250
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EBM is a genre that’s always had a very close relationship to industrial music, and therefore to work. Industrial music’s aim is to find catharsis in the crushing repetition of working. EBM then, is it’s more hedonistic cousin. On Working Class Woman, Marie Davidson brings work to the dance floor, spitting furiously about the realities of her identity over beats and bass that are about for forgetting those things.
The album is almost half instrumental and half not, and though her productions are always kinetic, hectic and intense, Working Class Woman is at it’s best when Davidson adds her voice to the equation. Your first taste of this combination is on opener, ‘Your Biggest Fan’. The inane comments of the entitled fan combine are played against her inner voice to create something paranoia inducing and soul-crushing. The next track, ‘Work It’, is like the theme song for a motivational speaker who hates themself. Davidson asserts “I work all the fucking time [...] I love it”. It speaks to the strength of her performances that yes, she is sincere. Most don’t release four solo albums and then some while hating their practice. But she is also obviously being ironic. She loves making music, but hers is a culture with an terrible work culture.
There’s also the heated bilingual therapy session of ‘Psychologist’, and ‘The Tunnel’s sense of palpable disgust set to disorienting noise. So yes, on the whole Working Class Woman is a challenging and confrontational listen. But before she says goodbye Davidson pulls one last trick. The last vocal track is ‘So Right’, unsurprisingly the album’s lead single. Here Davidson unveils her breadth. A radio-friendly banger, content and fulfilled.
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