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Gravity the Seducer

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Gravity the Seducer
Ladytron - Gravity The Seducer cover.jpg
Studio album by
Released12 September 2011 (2011-09-12)
StudioBluebell (Kent, England)[1]
Genre
Length47:47
LabelNettwerk
Producer
Ladytron chronology
Best of 00–10
(2011)
Gravity the Seducer
(2011)
Ladytron
(2019)
Singles from Gravity the Seducer
  1. "White Elephant"
    Released: 17 May 2011
  2. "Ambulances"
    Released: 21 June 2011
  3. "Mirage"
    Released: 9 August 2011

Gravity the Seducer is the fifth studio album by English electronic music band Ladytron. It was released on 12 September 2011 by Nettwerk. Recorded in Kent, England, the album has been described as "haunted, evocative, romantic",[4] and having "a feminine warmth".[5]

Three singles have been released from the album, "White Elephant", "Ambulances" and "Mirage". The song "Ace of Hz" had previously been released as a single from the greatest hits album Best of 00–10 before appearing on Gravity the Seducer. Release of the album coincided with a tour across Canada and the United States.

Gravity the Seducer earned generally positive reviews and reached number 72 on the UK Albums Chart, the group's highest-peaking album in their home country as of September 2012.

Production[edit]

"It isn't like our other albums. It sounds warm, lush, full of strings, organs and bells. It won't please everyone, you never can, but we're all pretty happy with it."

—Marnie on the album's sound.[6]

Gravity the Seducer was Ladytron's second studio album released under the Nettwerk record label, with whom they signed in 2007.[7] Their first release through Nettwork was the 2008 studio album Velocifero,[8] followed in March 2011 by the greatest hits album Best of 00–10.[9] Ladytron also self-released the live album, Live at London Astoria 16.07.08 in 2009.[10][11]

Gravity the Seducer was recorded in Kent, England,[6] and was co-produced by Barny Barnicott, who had previously collaborated with Arctic Monkeys and Editors.[12] as well as having worked on Ladytron's 2005 album Witching Hour.[13] The band felt that the production of the album was different from that of Velocifero, with band member Daniel Hunt noting that the latter record had been "made with performance in mind", as the band had recently finished touring when it was produced. Gravity the Seducer was produced "while removed from that thinking".[13]

In an interview with Rolling Stone magazine, singer Helen Marnie described the album as "the warmest, most emotional, thing we've ever done".[14] The vocal parts on the album have been mixed at a lower volume than previous Ladytron albums, while four tracks are entirely instrumental.[15] The title Gravity the Seducer is taken from a line in the song "Ninety Degrees", which Hunt has described as "expanding our creative horizons".[13] The cover artwork, designed by Neil Krug, has been described as an "endless vista" thematically linked the music's "vast atmospheres",[16] and has been compared to the works of design group Hipgnosis.[17]

Release and promotion[edit]

Gravity the Seducer was released on 12 September 2011 in the United Kingdom, and the following day in the United States.[17] In support of the album, Ladytron toured Europe, North America, Brazil, Chile, Thailand, Indonesia and Singapore throughout 2011.[18][19][20]

Singles[edit]

"Ace of Hz", the fourth song from Gravity the Seducer, also appeared on band's greatest hits compilation Best of 00–10 and on their Ace of Hz EP. "Ace of Hz" had been released as a single on 30 November 2010. The song was also included in the video game FIFA 11.[21] "White Elephant" was officially released as the lead single from Gravity the Seducer on 17 May 2011.[22]

For further promotion, the songs "Ambulances" and "Mirage" were released as digital downloads on 21 June and 9 August, respectively.[23][24] The video for "Mirage" was filmed at the Callanish Stones, a five-thousand-year-old stone circle near the Scottish village of Callanish.[25] The video was co-directed by Michael Sherrington and Daniel Hunt.[26]

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
SourceRating
Metacritic68/100[27]
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic3.5/5 stars[16]
The A.V. ClubB−[3]
Clash9/10[5]
Drowned in Sound5/10[2]
The Guardian3/5 stars[28]
NME7/10[29]
Pitchfork6/10[30]
PopMatters7/10[31]
Slant Magazine3/5 stars[32]
Spin6/10[33]

Gravity the Seducer received generally positive reviews from critics. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalised rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream publications, the album received an average score of 68, based on 20 reviews.[27] The Independent's Simon Price praised the album as "faultless", noting that it represented the band "at their most electronically pure".[4] Chris Todd of Clash magazine lauded Gravity the Seducer as "an album of lush and elegant pop music, beguiling and gloriously cinematic."[5] Slant Magazine's Eric Henderson described the album as "uniformly sleek [and] polished like a summer skyline" and praised singer Helen Marnie's "lightly lilting" vocals, but felt that the similarity between certain songs left the album feeling "almost barren".[32] Heather Phares of AllMusic described the album as "an admirable artistic choice, even though it doesn't always pay off".[16]

The A.V. Club's Christopher Bahn called the album "heart-on-sleeve and icily detached at the same time"; however, Bahn opined that "the lack of a propulsive single ... as well as an overabundance of instrumentals, suggests a band that's spinning its wheels".[3] Jamie Crossan of NME found the album to be "nothing new", but felt that the album's content is more of what "the band have always excelled" at.[29] Larry Fitzmaurice of Pitchfork dubbed the album "upsettingly uneven", adding that it represented a transition away from the sound of band's earlier work, which he felt was still evident in "Ace of Hz" and "Mirage", towards a "floatier, airy feel".[30] Michael Hann of The Guardian expressed that Gravity the Seducer did not measure up to the band's earlier work, picking out their earlier single "Destroy Everything You Touch" as a yardstick "that subsequent work will always be judged against".[28] Spin magazine's Barry Walters remarked that the album "lacks the infectious, dark-disco rumble" of Ladytron's earlier work, noting that it "withhold[s] the hooks that previously put the sweet in their bitter".[33] John Calvert of Drowned in Sound characterised the album as "slightly bland" and "nondescript in its understated sophistication", concluding that "Gravity the Seducer never manages to get under your skin the way the band intended".[2]

Commercial performance[edit]

In the band's home country, the United Kingdom, Gravity the Seducer peaked at number 72 on the UK Albums Chart, spending one week on the chart.[34] It became the band's highest-peaking album on the chart to date.[34]

The album's highest chart position was on the United States' Heatseekers Albums chart, where it peaked at number two.[35] The album reached 112 on the Billboard 200,[36] as well as number 27 on the Billboard Independent Albums chart and number six on the Dance/Electronic Albums chart.[37][38]

Gravity the Seducer reached number 50 on the Finnish Albums Chart, spending one week on the chart;[39] number 90 in the Canadian Albums Chart;[40] and number four on the Belgian Heatseekers Albums Chart, spending a week on that chart.[41]

Track listing[edit]

No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."White Elephant"Daniel Hunt4:15
2."Mirage"Hunt4:21
3."White Gold"5:00
4."Ace of Hz"Hunt3:36
5."Ritual"Hunt4:17
6."Moon Palace"Mira Aroyo3:26
7."Altitude Blues"
  • Aroyo
  • Marnie
  • Wu
3:19
8."Ambulances"Marnie3:16
9."Melting Ice"Aroyo4:48
10."Transparent Days"Hunt4:01
11."Ninety Degrees"Hunt4:34
12."Aces High"Hunt2:54
Total length:47:47

Gravity the Seducer (Remixed)[edit]

On 29 November 2013, Ladytron released the remix album Gravity the Seducer (Remixed), a collection of remixes of Gravity the Seducer songs. They also released an exclusive limited-edition blue vinyl of this remix album on Record Store Day special Black Friday.[42]

No.TitleRemixer(s)Length
1."White Elephant"Strange Fruit3:43
2."Mirage"Mixhell4:49
3."White Gold"Tarsius6:15
4."Ace of Hz"Punks Jump Up4:53
5."Ritual"Reset!4:32
6."Moon Palace"ARIISK3:23
7."Altitude Blues"Outfit4:51
8."Ambulances"Gosteffects4:18
9."Melting Ice"The Chaotic Good5:41
10."Transparent Days"SONOIO4:20
11."Ninety Degrees"Somekong6:17
12."Aces High"Ladytron3:12
Total length:56:14

Personnel[edit]

Credits adapted from the liner notes of Gravity the Seducer.[1]

  • Ladytron – production
  • Daniel Hunt – production
  • Barny Barnicott – additional production, engineering, mixing
  • Alessandro Cortini – additional production
  • Neil Krug – artwork
  • Trevor Tarczynski – design

Charts[edit]

Chart (2011) Peak
position
Belgian Heatseekers Albums (Ultratop Flanders)[41] 4
Canadian Albums (Billboard)[40] 90
Finnish Albums (Suomen virallinen lista)[39] 50
UK Albums (OCC)[43] 72
UK Independent Albums (OCC)[44] 11
US Billboard 200[36] 112
US Heatseekers Albums (Billboard)[35] 2
US Independent Albums (Billboard)[37] 27
US Top Dance/Electronic Albums (Billboard)[38] 6

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Gravity the Seducer (liner notes). Ladytron. Nettwerk. 2011. 30924-2.CS1 maint: others (link)
  2. ^ a b c Calvert, John (12 September 2011). "Ladytron – Gravity the Seducer". Drowned in Sound. Retrieved 22 September 2011.
  3. ^ a b c Bahn, Christopher (13 September 2011). "Ladytron: Gravity The Seducer". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  4. ^ a b Price, Simon (11 September 2011). "Album: Ladytron, Gravity the Seducer (Nettwerk)". The Independent. Archived from the original on 1 February 2012. Retrieved 22 September 2011.
  5. ^ a b c Todd, Chris (9 September 2011). "Ladytron – Gravity The Seducer". Clash. Retrieved 22 September 2011.
  6. ^ a b Carle, Darren (26 May 2011). "Interview: Ladytron's Helen Marnie". The Skinny. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  7. ^ Goldmeier, Jeremy (12 November 2007). "Ladytron hooks up to Nettwerk for new album". Paste. Retrieved 12 March 2012.
  8. ^ Phares, Heather. "Velocifero – Ladytron". AllMusic. Retrieved 27 March 2012.
  9. ^ Breihan, Tom (1 February 2011). "Ladytron Ready Career Retrospective". Pitchfork. Retrieved 27 March 2012.
  10. ^ "Ladytron: Live at London Astoria 16.07.08. Now on iTunes van Ladytron op Myspace". Myspace. Retrieved 19 November 2011.
  11. ^ "Live at London Astoria 16.07.08 – Ladytron". AllMusic. Retrieved 27 March 2012.
  12. ^ Breihan, Tom (31 March 2011). "Ladytron's New Album: Gravity the Seducer". Pitchfork. Retrieved 12 March 2012.
  13. ^ a b c "Ladytron – About". Ladytron.com. Archived from the original on 26 March 2012. Retrieved 27 March 2012.
  14. ^ Nika, Colleen (25 October 2011). "Ladytron Go Glam on New Album". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 12 March 2012.
  15. ^ Gill, Jaime (7 September 2011). "Review of Ladytron – Gravity the Seducer". BBC Music. Retrieved 26 March 2012.
  16. ^ a b c Phares, Heather. "Gravity the Seducer – Ladytron". AllMusic. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  17. ^ a b Fitzmaurice, Larry (16 May 2011). "New Ladytron: "White Elephant"". Pitchfork. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  18. ^ Breihan, Tom (6 July 2011). "Ladytron Share New Song Tour Dates". Pitchfork. Retrieved 12 March 2012.
  19. ^ "Ladytron Announces International Tour Dates; Sneak Peek To Exclusive MTV Iggy Performance". Nettwerk. 17 October 2011. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  20. ^ Studarus, Laura (30 November 2011). "Watch: Ladytron – "Mirage" Video". Under the Radar. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  21. ^ Breihan, Tom (3 November 2010). "New Ladytron: "Ace of Hz"". Pitchfork. Retrieved 12 March 2012.
  22. ^ "White Elephant – Single by Ladytron". iTunes Store (UK). Retrieved 9 December 2011.
  23. ^ "Ambulances – Single by Ladytron". iTunes Store (UK). Retrieved 9 December 2011.
  24. ^ "Mirage – Single by Ladytron". iTunes Store (UK). Retrieved 9 December 2011.
  25. ^ "Calanais stones in Liverpool band Ladytron's new video". BBC News. 16 November 2011. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  26. ^ "Ladytron Releases Music Video for Single, "Mirage", From 'Gravity the Seducer'". Nettwerk. 15 November 2011. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  27. ^ a b "Gravity the Seducer by Ladytron Reviews and Tracks". Metacritic. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  28. ^ a b Hann, Michael (8 September 2011). "Ladytron: Gravity the Seducer – review". The Guardian. Retrieved 14 December 2016.
  29. ^ a b Crossan, Jamie (6 September 2011). "Album Review: Ladytron – 'Gravity The Seducer'". NME. Archived from the original on 7 April 2014. Retrieved 17 September 2011.
  30. ^ a b Fitzmaurice, Larry (14 September 2011). "Ladytron: Gravity the Seducer". Pitchfork. Retrieved 14 September 2011.
  31. ^ Payne, Chris (7 November 2011). "Ladytron: Gravity The Seducer". PopMatters. Archived from the original on 8 November 2011. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  32. ^ a b Henderson, Eric (12 September 2011). "Ladytron: Gravity the Seducer". Slant Magazine. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  33. ^ a b Walters, Barry (13 September 2011). "Ladytron, 'Gravity the Seducer' (Nettwerk)". Spin. Archived from the original on 22 November 2011. Retrieved 22 September 2011.
  34. ^ a b "Ladytron". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  35. ^ a b "Ladytron Chart History (Heatseekers Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  36. ^ a b "Ladytron Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  37. ^ a b "Ladytron Chart History (Independent Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  38. ^ a b "Ladytron Chart History (Top Dance/Electronic Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  39. ^ a b "Ladytron: Gravity the Seducer" (in Finnish). Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  40. ^ a b "Top 100 Albums in Canada". Jam!. 22 September 2011. Archived from the original on 24 September 2011. Retrieved 24 September 2011.
  41. ^ a b "Gravity The Seducer – Gravity The Seducer" (in Dutch). Ultratop. Retrieved 13 November 2011.
  42. ^ "RECORD STORE DAY - SpecialRelease".
  43. ^ "Official Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  44. ^ "Official Independent Albums Chart Top 50". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 13 December 2018.