Album Review: "Electra Complex" by Levinsky

A review of Levinsky's excellent cinematic, progressive, and chilling album "Electra Complex"....

June 28, 2019

Latest Post Nightride.FM - The State of Synth - S2E5 The Mental Health Episode by Dennis Gruetter

Levinsky - "Electra Complex" album art by Ninni Kairisalo (https://kaligraphics.fi/)

A little about Levinsky:

    It's no secret that Finland is turning into a powerhouse of synthwave (I jokingly call it the "finnvasion"). Besides the established Finns, upcoming artists such as Ace Buchannon, Megahammer, Kizunaut, VVOV, Ferus Melek, Millennium Falck, and more call it home. It thus comes as no surprise that we are graced with another from this fine pedigree by the name of Levinsky. His influences include Jean-Michel Jarre, John Carpenter, Goblin and Vangelis. He's also a fan of classic horror, thriller and sci-fi movies, especially Italian "giallo" movies such as Dario Argento's Tenebre and Suspiria. All these influences definitely show themselves in Levinsky's unique progressive synthwave style. In 2018 he performed at several domestic live shows and more in 2019, with foreign trips planned. Guest vocalists have featured on his singles such as "Psychosexuality" (Megan McDuffee) and "Love Kills" (Sandra Bullet), You can find out more about Levinsky by reading Karl Magi's excellent interview here.

Levinsky, Finnish harbinger of cinematic and dark synthwave

Levinsky also draws inspiration from Kate Bush, and if you want to put a smile on his face, simply send him a Kate Bush GIF. I can attest to the fact that he pretty much worships the ground she dances upon.

This is how you make Levinsky smile

‌‌

A quick synopsis of the "Electra Complex" album:  ‌

    "Electra Complex" released June 28th 2019, and is the follow-up to his 2018 EP "Method to the Madness". Artwork for the album was provided by Ms. Ninni Kairisalo (https://kaligraphcis). The album contains 11 tracks of Levinsky's signature progressive and cinematic synthwave creations. It begins with an intro track that gently brings the listener into a roller-coaster of music fit for a movie soundtrack, and ends with an outro to roll credits on the album. All the tunes are instrumental, providing a truly haunting and epic ballad.

Let me present the 11 songs on the album:

"Intro - Gegenübertragung" - Gradually twinkling into a haunting theme fit for a '60s or '70s European thriller, this appetizer invites the listener to discover Levinsky's skilled compositions to follow.

Pet Hate - Diving right into a cinematic melody with deep orchestral chords and then a fresh take on what sounds like some twisted horror fueled marimba, this song was first released in March, 2019 giving us all an enticing tease to what Levinsky had planned for this album. The last verse eases us out perfectly in time for the next track.

Arousal - A spooky intro drops into a throbbing climactic verse, transitioning back and forth between the two throughout the song. The soundscapes in this truly fit the title, with the name of the game "dangerous seduction". You can really hear Levinsky's love for movies like "The Vampire Lovers" in this.

Electra Complex - The title track from the album (and for good reason in my opinion since it is my favourite), this screams early '70s horror. Cinematic and speedily paced, the chords, eerie trebles, and haunting bass make me think of a protagonist running through dark woods, chased by an unseen horror. The song then transitions to a slower epic last verse conveying satisfying resolution and then a cheeky "or is it?" ditty.

Celebrity Suicides - This song marches through powerful builds and gentle drops that feature a throbbing heartbeat scattered throughout the track. It keeps the listener on edge, anxious, and disturbed, but in a masterful way. Perfect for the theme of the album.

Interlude - Vietato Ai Minori Di 18 Anni - Here we get a good dose of more typical synthwave (this time with the sound of a VHS player being loaded) with gliding notes punctuated by the odd female scream to remind us that Levinsky is all about the thrills and horror.

Knives Out For Everyone - After a synthy interlude, we return to slightly thriller vibes while keeping the composition in the realm of darksynth. Pounding beats and lilting notes transition from sci-fi to horror and back.

Sentient Beings - This song is climatic and purposeful. Layered synths peak and drop while the pace makes me want to triumphantly raise my fist, shouting at the sky, challenging the powers that be.

Venus In Fur - Footsteps lead us into a very synthy track pulsing with intent, sounding like the intro music to some cool TV series from yesteryear. The deep sound of whips cracking sneaks in half way through just to remind us once again that, yes, Levinsky is all about fetish horror.

The Memory Of Wet Lips - We jump back to the 'pre-interlude" spooky and throbbing horror sounds here. Strong notes interspersed with deeper chords proceed with thumping beats signalling forceful intent.

Outro - No Fate - Ending the album, this song scintillates with high notes and deep chords reminiscent of movies about undead vixens coming to take our souls. It leaves the listener wondering "did we successfully escape some dungeon filled with torture devices manned by undead succubi? or is there more to come?". Definitely Gothic, it makes me believe Levinsky is already hard at work cooking up a sequel.

Levinsky performing

    In summary, "Electra Complex" is a stellar release from Levinsky. He flexes his unique sounds that push the boundaries of synthwave with progressive compositions, but it still evokes feelings of older pieces and scores. Trying to label these tunes with a certain genre tag would be an exercise in futility. He truly does great work crossing boundaries and moving the post forward in terms of sounds, pacing, and feels. His good friend Millennium Falck assisted with post-production and mastering, ensuring that this album is polished and ready to reward the listener with a new and fresh, albeit ominous, musical journey. I can safely declare this release a "must have" in your collection. In the world of synthwave, we all seem to have a common interest in past influences, and Levinsky provides us with music that pays tribute to an overlooked history of European thriller and horror productions that skirt the line between terror and arousal.

Levinsky in action

    A few people throughout the world are lucky enough to own Levinsky t-shirts, and I hear through the grapevine that he has more designs coming. Check out his "Loves Kills" ‌t-shirt below (a tribute to Ingrid Pitt, actress from many '60s and '70s horror flicks). Simply gorgeous. If you love this album like I do, treat yourself to a beautiful shirt and show the world you think this artist is awesome.

Follow, support, and contact Levinsky at the links below. He's a great supporter of other artists and really respects his fans.

Spotify
Bandcamp
Soundcloud
Twitter
Instagram
Youtube
Facebook

Julian Green

Published June 28, 2019

Subscribe to our newsletter

Recieve news directly to your email.

Nightride.FM © 2019.