Meet Electra Heart: The Grand Return of Marina + The Diamonds

Don’t call it an alter-ego.

Meet Electra Heart: She is a story, not a person, as invented by one of the brightest new talents to come from the UK: Marina + The Diamonds.

After the release of her critically acclaimed debut last year, The Family Jewels, Marina’s been hard at work cooking up the follow-up to her debut with some of pop’s heaviest hitters (despite an initial hesitance), including Dr. Luke and Stargate.

For fans accustomed to the singer’s quirky mixture of bright, hook-heavy pop melodies and dramatic vocalizing, the Top 40 production roster for Marina’s as-of-yet untitled sophomore attempt seems somewhat surprising. As the singer explained in an interview with PopJustice:

If this was a year ago I don’t mind saying now that I would have been, like, “no way am I doing this”. I was not even up for working with anyone. This is why these two songs fit really well together actually, because ‘Fear & Loathing’ is about genuinely not feeling bitter or crazy or jealous any more (nervous laugh) and actually feeling a lot better off for it.

To kick off her new beginning, the singer has given birth to Electra Heart, a character Marina will employ to narrate a grander vision: A tale of the American dream (with a side of Greek tragedy to boot.)

It’s a concept she’s been continuously fascinated by (as previously encountered on her Family Jewels single “Hollywood.) Yet as she explained to PopJustice, the story this time around has more to do with exploring the underbelly of American society than the glitz and glamour that underscored her 2010 single:

Electra Heart is the antithesis of everything that I stand for. And the point of introducing her and building a whole concept around her is that she stands for the corrupt side of American ideology, and basically that’s the corruption of yourself. My worst fear – that’s anyone’s worst fear – is losing myself and becoming a vacuous person. And that happens a lot when you’re very ambitious.

And so it began on Monday, as Marina uploaded Part One of her tale: “Fear & Loathing.” Directed by Caspar Balslev, the video finds the beautiful crooner sitting in front of a vanity, deep in thought and thoughtfully staring into the mirror. At a point, she lifts a pair of scissors and–pensively–begins to hack away at her own curls, inch by inch until settling for a cropped bob and strolling out onto the balcony.

The song itself is a gorgeous, slightly more sophisticated departure for the 25-year-old singer, complimented by echoing piano chords and airy, soaring ambient sound. “There’s no crime in being kind / Not everyone is out to screw you over / Maybe they just want to get to know you,” she ponderously croons. It’s a more mature, developed sound for the singer–an incredibly promising start to a new chapter in Marina’s career.

The next piece of Electra Heart: The Start will be uploaded to Marina’s YouTube next Monday at 4 PM.

And–if you couldn’t tell by now by the copious quotage–you really ought to read the entire interview with Marina over at PopJustice now for added insight.

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