A Place Both Wonderful & Strange: The return
'What I Speak I Create' looks beyond Twin Peaks
Since his 2009 break from the Silent Drape Runners, Atlanta expat Russ Marshalek carries on with his practices crafting electronic, witch house and dance music with A Place Both Wonderful & Strange. Formed in Brooklyn with fellow synth-mongers Shanda Woods and Laura Hajeck, APBW&S moves away from mixtape mediums with the album What I Speak I Create, released via Sony Records on Aug. 4.
Perfectly timed with Showtime's "Twin Peaks: the Revival," APBW&S' six-song LP follows the 2016 CD Laura Palmer Deviations. The previous release functioned as the soundtrack to the group's Twin Peaks performance art piece, "Keys Open Doors: The Hidden Life of Laura Palmer." What I Speak I Create renews the group's sense of David Lynchian sensibilities using an array of synthesizers and what Marshalek describes as "ill-advised" vocal processors. The album delves into darker moments with "Hex and the City," creeping into '90s-style classic trip hop grooves and slithering beats. The group indulges in dance eccentricities with a pop single, titled "W*tch," blasting through with EDM beats and Woods' sugar-coated vocals, and returns to solace in the haunting echoes of "Not the Red Baron." What I Speak I Create pulls through with dark electronic noise elements while breaking from the molds of the Black Lodge for APBW&S to become a wholly new force of nature. ★★★☆☆