Monday 18 December 2017

Music: II by Electric Penguins ***

(Talking Tiger Records)

John Meagher

John Meagher

With their confusingly titled debut album Goodbye From Electric Penguins, the Dublin-based outfit attracted the attentions of old school electronica fans. This was a band that knew their way around vintage Moogs.

Since then, founding member Sean Quinn has left, taking with him some of the subtle magic that made Goodbye such an engaging listen.

That's not to say Mark Cullen and Paul Murphy have floundered in his wake -- in places, II is a beguilingly lovely collection, flitting between the thoughtful, avant-garde atmospherics of the 1970s German electronic revolution to ruminative songs, reminiscent of early Pink Floyd.

From the cinematic scope of Minutes to the whimsical Julia Stephens, the duo's attention to detail is obvious.

There's no shortage of melancholy (Nico's End, in particular), but there are uplifting moments too, not least the London-loving Highgate Hill.

Electric Penguins play The Grand Social, Liffey Street, Dublin, on Saturday, December 18.

Burn it: Highgate Hill; Julia Stephens

Irish Independent

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