For Lovers of: Soft Cell, Magical Cloudz, Junior Boys, Depeche Mode, TRST, Jan Hammer
RETRO AESTHETICS, SPACIOUS SYNTHESIZERS AND A VELVET CROON ARE THE HALLMARKS OF THE OAKLAND ELECTRONIC DUO INTROFLIRT.
After releasing their first two singles 'Frozen Lace' and 'Orange Light', Oakland, CA synth pop artists Introflirt delivered their second self released album Temporary Heaven, on August 12th. Introflirt is a duo comprised of Ben Benjamin and Vafa.
This album represents the next stage of evolution in their self-described 'croonwave' music. Dissolving notions of what electronic music should be into a colorful flurry that pops and sparkles, the album is threaded together by a velvet voice and candid lyrics that touch on themes of disappointment in people, the fragility of relationships, and the path towards sexual liberation. True to Introflirt form, the songs on Temporary Heaven maintain a delicate balance, offering the soundtrack to a life that is introverted while still reaching out.
The album’s first single ‘Frozen Lace’ was inspired by the struggle to overcome sexual repression, which generally goes hand in hand with some religions. It’s buzzing bass and squirming synth represent a tug-of-war between satisfying desires and fearing the potential consequences. Inspired by the concept that deciding between gratification or holding back entails excruciating self-torment, ‘Frozen Lace’ picks up on the lingering trepidation that moral laws often produce.
This was the first song to emerge for Introflirt after releasing their debut album. “It came from the longing to rid myself of guilt and fear of consequences when approaching certain desires,” explains vocalist and lyricist Ben Benjamin. “Growing up in a religious family - although my parents have pretty much been kicked out of every church they ever attended - installed many programs I’ve worked hard to disassemble.”
While Introflirt’s self-titled debut album documented the group testing the Flirty waters, the eight-track Temporary Heaven jumps in without inhibition. The album retains the raw, gritty synth pop that endeared many listeners to their debut release - but adds a seedier, darker, more danceable attitude, taking the Introflirt party from the rooftop to the basement.
While Temporary Heaven presents Introflirt with a more energetic, modern feel, what stands out most is the transformation of Ben Benjamin’s vocals. After spending countless weekends in piano bars performing jazz standards, Benjamin’s vocal presence enters a similar space inhabited by the lounge singers of the 40s, 50s, and 60s, but set in the hazy light of dim lit dance clubs.
Reinventing pop structures to reflect the unpredictable nature of life’s twists and turns, the songs on this album present a clarity and confidence that’s a little bit dark, a little bit sentimental, and very very flirty.
"Slow creeping synth and infectious beat, together with words that are as addictively seedy as anything you’ll find on “Non-Stop Erotic Cabaret”, Soft Cell’s groundbreaking album" - The Spill Magazine
"Never though I'd say crooner, sexual, eclectic and synthtastic in the same phrase, but Introflirt combines all these things" - The Record Stache
"Beautifully Bleak and Bleakly Beautiful" - Indie30
“They are a formidable duo that is creating music that is both commanding and sexy as hell.” - Strawberry Tongue Radio
"A sound that takes us back to the 80s, with a blissful nostalgia... spacey pops, sparkles, buzzes and whirrs... Introflirt have tapped into the next big thing in electronic music" - Essentially Pop