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This article is about the album. To see alternate articles, check out the character or the song with the same name.
Electra Heart
Electra Heart album artwork
Studio album by Marina and the Diamonds
Released April 27, 2012
Recorded 2010–12
Genre Pop, electronic
Length 46:51
Label 679, Atlantic
Format Digital download, CD, Vinyl
Producer DJ Chuckie, Cirkut, Diplo, Dr. Luke, Liam Howe, Devrim Karaoğlu, Greg Kurstin, Fabian Lenssen, Ryan McMahon, Rick Nowels, Ryan Rabin, Dean Reid, Stargate
Marina and the Diamonds chronology
The American Jewels extended play artwork Electra Heart album artwork Froot album artwork
(2010) (2012) (2015)
Singles from Electra Heart
  1. "Radioactive"
    Released: September 30, 2011
  2. "Primadonna"
    Released: April 6, 2012
  3. "Power & Control"
    Released: July 20, 2012
  4. "How to Be a Heartbreaker"
    Released: September 26, 2012

Electra Heart is the second studio album by the Welsh singer/songwriter Marina and the Diamonds, with a tracklist of exactly 12 songs, one less than her original debut album, The Family Jewels. The album has four singles in its contents, while the other eight songs are purely for the album content and not promotional. It was released on April 12th, 2012.

ConceptEdit

The album narrates the story of Electra Heart, a character developed by Marina specifically for this album. In Marina's own words, the album is about:

"the girl you run into in the supermarket wearing a faux fur coat and sunglasses, leisurely picking through the avocado. Her cart is filled with champagne and strawberries and she doesn’t even care that you’ve been staring at her from the bakery aisle. She’s angsty, and you can tell that her phone conversation didn’t end well by the way she dramatically dropped her phone and wiped a solitary tear from her cheek. The same cheek that has a eyeliner-drawn heart on it."
- Marina Diamandis, interview with Michigan Daily[1]

Marina wrote the album as a role-reversal of sorts; as its endearingly dramatic protagonist is not the fictatious embodiment of herself, but rather the exact implication of everything she strives not to be.[2] Marina also says she uses Electra and the subsequent album as a means of portraying the American Dream from the point of view of someone who isn't American.[3]

The album is largely influenced by American culture, and its prominent and recurring themes range from love to loss to pondering the various "roles" unknowingly played by your typical blue-collar American. Marina drew inspiration for her album "socially and culturally" after spending time in the US on tour,[4] and it isn't surprising, as the album is chock-full of references to the idealistic America of the 1950's and the inevitable loss that accompanies any far-fetched dream.

PromotionEdit

Promotion for the Electra Heart album was done through Marina's YouTube channel as a multi-media film and audio experience to be released in parts. Each song would be granted a music video that was something like a mini-film; complete with underlying messages and artistic imagery. Marina announced that she was hoping to have about 15 parts in the video series.[5]

CompositionEdit

Heavily inspired by electropop musical styles, Electra Heart has been described as a concept album detailing "female identity" and "a recent breakup".[6][7] It represents a musical departure from Diamandis' debut studio album The Family Jewels, which incorporated a new wave and indie rock-influenced sonority. She later commented that the album was specifically designed as a pop record to allow her to establish a greater prominence in the contemporary music industry.[8] The titular character "Electra Heart" portrays four female archetypes in the album: "Teen Idle", "Primadonna", "Homewrecker", and "Su-Barbie-A". Their presences on each track are not clearly defined, although Diamandis acknowledged that they are more apparent on the visual aspects of the project.[9]

SinglesEdit

Inspired by the six-single promotional campaign for Teenage Dream (2010) by Katy Perry, Diamandis planned to release six singles from Electra Heart, however, three tracks were released before she finished promoting the album.[10] "Primadonna" was announced as the lead single from the record on 13 March 2012,[11] and was released through the iTunes Store in the United States on 20 March.[12] Robert Copsey from Digital Spy spoke favourably of the track, complimenting its overall production and Diamandis' portrayal of its female archetype.[13] It peaked at number 11 on the UK Singles Chart, becoming Diamandis' fifth song to enter the top forty in the United Kingdom.[14] "Power & Control" was released through the iTunes Store in the United Kingdom on 20 July 2012 and served as the second single from Electra Heart.[15] It peaked at number 193 on the UK Singles Chart.[16] In July 2012, it was announced that "How to Be a Heartbreaker" would be released as the second single in the United States and the third single in the United Kingdom. Diamandis commented that she had written the track while Electra Heart was being pressed in the United Kingdom, and consequently missed the cut-off for initial inclusion on the record; however, it was featured in the revised track listing for the American version.[17] The song was released through the iTunes Store on 7 December 2012,[18] and peaked at number 88 on the UK Singles Chart.[19]

Tour Edit

In February 2012, Marina announced the launch of her headlining The Lonely Hearts Club Tour. It ran alongside the Mylo Xyloto Tour headlined by Coldplay, for which Diamandis served as the supporting act.[20] The Lonely Hearts Club Tour was initially scheduled to begin on 4 May at the Manchester Cathedral in Manchester, although it was delayed after Diamandis sustained a vocal cord injury, and ultimately began on 18 June at The Waterfront in Norwich.[21] The American leg of the tour began on 10 July at The Fonda Theatre in Los Angeles,[22] while the tour itself ended on 29 May 2013 after a performance at the Rumsey Playfield in New York City.[23]

Commercial Preformance Edit

Electra Heart debuted at number one on the UK Albums Chart with first-week sales of 21,538 copies.[24] It became first Marina's chart-topping album in the United Kingdom,[25] although it was additionally distinguished as the lowest-selling number-one record of the 21st century in the country.[26] It was later surpassed by Write It On Your Skin (2012) by Newton Falker, which debuted at number one with first-week sales of 16,647 copies.[27] Electra Heart was eventually certified Silver by the British Phonographic Industry for exceeding shipments of 60,000 units in the country. The record additionally reached number one on both the Irish Albums Chart and the Scottish Albums Chart;[28][29] It was recognized with a Platinum certification in both territories.[30]As of March 2016 Electra Heart had sold 100,000 copies in the UK.

Electra Heart performed moderately on additionally record chart in Europe. The record peaked at number 11 on the Swiss Hitparade (Switzerland),[31] and reached number 17 on the German Media Control Charts.[32] It charted at number 25 on the Ö3 Austria Top 40,[33] number 30 on the Norwegian VG-lista,[34] and number 41 on the Swedish Sverigetopplistan.[35] The project reached the lower ends of the Dutch MegaCharts and the Belgian Ultratop in Wallonia, respectively peaking at numbers 92 and 132 in each region.[36][37] However, it reached number 31 on the Official New Zealand Music Chart and number 32 on the Australian ARIA Charts in Oceania.[38][39]

Electra Heart debuted at number 31 on the U.S Billboard 200,[40] and reached number two on the Billboard Dance/Electronic Albums component chart.[41] It has sold 150,000 copies in the US as of March 2015.[42][42] Elsewhere in North America, the record peaked at number 50 on the Canadian Albums Chart.[43] In August 2012, Diamandis commented that she believed consumers in the United Kingdom had misinterpreted her comical effort with a perceived abandonment of her original musical inspiration, thus resulting in a relative underperformance in the country.[44] In contrast, she felt that her American audience was more receptive of Electra Heart and her evolving public image.[45]

Electra Heart peaked number 24 in the year-end US Electronic/Dance Albums Chart in 2012, and 14 in the year-end 2013. [46][47]

Region Certification certified units
United States (RIAA) 150,000^
United Kingdom Gold 100,000^
Ireland (IRMA) Gold 7,500^

Critical receptionEdit

At Metacritic, which assigns a weighted mean rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, Electra Heart received an average score of 57, which indicates "mixed or average reviews", based on 16 reviews.[48]

AllMusic gave it 3 and half stars out of 5, describing Electra Heart as  "a brooding, sexy, desperate, overwrought, and infectious record that's both aware and unashamed of its contrivance."[49] Entertainment Weekly enlisted Tim Stack to evaluate the project, who complimented Diamandis for her ability to "rival Katy Perry for catchy hooks, command with the swagger of Gwen Stefani, and even come close to the ethereal vocal exhilaration of Florence Welch." giving it 83 out of 100.[50]

The Independent accepted that the record was "too professional to be truly terrible", although noted that Diamandis' revamped public image as a "British Katy Perry" lacked ingenuity, giving it 3 out of 5 stars.[51]  NME columnist Priya Elan summarised the project as an "expensive-sounding failure" that suffered from its lack of decisiveness, giving it 5 out of 10.[52]

The harshest review came from the magazine Clash, with George Boorman writing, "'Electra heart' is an ingloriously languid statement of Marina's demise, the final stamp of disapproval on her flailing excuse of a musical career. There is actually a song called 'Bubblegum Bitch' on this album.'' giving it 1 out of 10.[53]

Track listingEdit

No. TitleWriter(s)Producer(s) Length
1. "Bubblegum Bitch"  Marina Diamandis, Rick NowelsNowels, Dean Reid (co.) 2:34
2. "Primadonna"  Diamandis, Julie Frost, Łukasz Gottwald, Henry WalterDr. Luke, Cirkut 3:41
3. "Lies"  Diamandis, Gottwald, Walter, Thomas PentzDr. Luke, Cirkut, Diplo (co.) 3:46
4. "Homewrecker"  Diamandis, NowelsNowels 3:22
5. "Starring Role"  Diamandis, Greg KurstinKurstin 3:27
6. "The State of Dreaming"  Diamandis, Nowels, Devrim KaraoğluNowels, Karaoğlu 3:36
7. "Power & Control"  Diamandis, Steve AngelloKurstin 3:46
8. "Living Dead"  Diamandis, KurstinKurstin 4:04
9. "Teen Idle"  DiamandisLiam Howe 4:14
10. "Valley of the Dolls"  Diamandis, Nowels, KaraoğluNowels, Karaoğlu 4:13
11. "Hypocrates"  Diamandis, NowelsNowels, Karaoğlu 4:01
12. "Fear and Loathing"  DiamandisHowe 6:07
Total length:
46:51


Online bonus contents

The UK enhanced CD allows exclusive online access to the following bonus contents:

  • "Lies" (Acoustic) (video) – 4:07
  • "Primadonna" (Benny Benassi Remix) – 3:55
  • "Primadonna" (Kat Krazy Remix) – 3:39
Limited edition box set

The limited edition clamshell box set includes:

  • Dark pink perspex Electra Heart ring
  • Frosted pink perspex
  • Electra Heart necklace
  • Electra Heart pocket mirror
  • Four exclusive photo art cards
  • Deluxe format of Electra Heart CD album in exclusive cardboard sleeve


ReferencesEdit

  1. Michigan Daily. "'Electra Heart' will eat your heart." Accessed July 17, 2013.
  2. Michigan Daily. "'Electra Heart' will eat your heart." Accessed July 17, 2013.
  3. PopJustice. "A series of questions and answers in which Marina & The Diamonds explains what she has been doing...." Accessed July 17, 2013.
  4. PopJustice. "A series of questions and answers in which Marina & The Diamonds explains what she has been doing...." Accessed July 17, 2013.
  5. Pop Counter/Culture. "Marina and the Diamonds.." Accessed July 17, 2013.
  6. http://www.bbc.co.uk/music/reviews/fbrj
  7. http://www.thenational.ae/arts-culture/music/marina-diamandis-releases-cathartic-concept-album#ixzz3069fhHxl
  8. http://www.digitalspy.com/music/news/a451225/marina-and-the-diamonds-electra-heart-was-originally-a-side-project.html
  9. http://www.thenational.ae/arts-culture/music/marina-diamandis-releases-cathartic-concept-album#ixzz3069fhHxl
  10. http://www.digitalspy.com/music/news/a391372/marina-and-the-diamonds-plans-six-singles-from-electra-heart-album.html#~oEWhIh5xqoZfqu
  11. http://www.nme.com/news/marina-and-the-diamonds/62588
  12. https://web.archive.org/web/20120324071740/https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/primadonna-single/id509710794
  13. http://www.digitalspy.com/music/review/a374805/marina-and-the-diamonds-primadonna-single-review.html#~oCu1nxBq2ZzYiV
  14. http://www.officialcharts.com/chart-news/carly-rae-jepsens-call-me-maybe-is-the-uks-number-1-single-for-a-third-week-1356/
  15. https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/power-control-remix-bundle-ep/id538834147
  16. http://www.zobbel.de/cluk/120804cluk.txt
  17. http://www.digitalspy.com/music/news/a391343/marina-and-the-diamonds-talks-new-uk-single-how-to-be-a-heartbreaker.html#~oCutSKhxGErRJ6
  18. https://itunes.apple.com/ie/album/how-to-be-a-heartbreaker-ep/id575020700
  19. http://www.zobbel.de/cluk/130216cluk.txt
  20. http://www.soundspike.com/story/4171/marina-and-the-diamonds-bring-lonely-hearts-club-to-north-america/
  21. http://www.marinaandthediamonds.com/news,uk-tour-postponement_340.htm?pg=1
  22. http://www.marinaandthediamonds.com/news,lonely-hearts-club-coming-to-north-america_318.htm#
  23. http://www.marketwired.com/press-release/marina-and-the-diamonds-announce-next-leg-smash-lonely-hearts-club-headline-tour-north-1750405.htm
  24. http://www.digitalspy.com/music/news/a393502/newton-faulkner-sells-just-16k-to-get-number-one-album.html#~oCv69qxTB7hDil
  25. http://www.officialcharts.com/chart-news/marina-the-diamonds-claim-first-official-number-1-album-1379/
  26. http://www.digitalspy.com/music/news/a393502/newton-faulkner-sells-just-16k-to-get-number-one-album.html#~oCv69qxTB7hDil
  27. http://www.digitalspy.com/music/news/a393502/newton-faulkner-sells-just-16k-to-get-number-one-album.html#~oCv69qxTB7hDil
  28. http://www.chart-track.co.uk/index.jsp?c=p%2Fmusicvideo%2Fmusic%2Farchive%2Findex_test.jsp&ct=240002&arch=t&lyr={{{year}}}&year={{{year}}}&week={{{week}}}
  29. http://www.officialcharts.com/archive-chart/_/23/12
  30. http://www.irishcharts.ie/awards/gold12.htm
  31. http://www.swisscharts.com/showitem.asp?interpret=Marina+and+the+Diamonds&titel=Electra+Heart&cat=a
  32. http://musicline.de/de/chartverfolgung_summary/artist/Marina+and+the+Diamonds/?type=longplay
  33. http://austriancharts.at/showitem.asp?interpret=Marina+and+the+Diamonds&titel=Electra+Heart&cat=a
  34. http://www.norwegiancharts.com/showitem.asp?interpret=Marina+and+the+Diamonds&titel=Electra+Heart&cat=a
  35. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electra_Heart#cite_note-Sweden-75
  36. http://www.dutchcharts.nl/showitem.asp?interpret=Marina+and+the+Diamonds&titel=Electra+Heart&cat=a
  37. http://www.ultratop.be/fr/showitem.asp?interpret=Marina+and+the+Diamonds&titel=Electra+Heart&cat=a
  38. http://www.charts.org.nz/showitem.asp?interpret=Marina+and+the+Diamonds&titel=Electra+Heart&cat=a
  39. http://www.australian-charts.com/showitem.asp?interpret=Marina+and+the+Diamonds&titel=Electra+Heart&cat=a
  40. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electra_Heart#cite_note-Billboard200-80
  41. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dance/Electronic_Albums
  42. 42.0 42.1 https://web.archive.org/web/20150314222707/http://hitsdailydouble.com/new_album_releases
  43. http://www.billboard.com/artist/309458/marina-and-diamonds/chart?f=309
  44. http://www.nme.com/news/marina-and-the-diamonds/65711
  45. http://www.nme.com/news/marina-and-the-diamonds/65711
  46. http://www.billboard.com/charts/year-end/2012/top-dance-electronic-albums?page=2
  47. http://www.billboard.com/charts/year-end/2013/top-dance-electronic-albums?page=1
  48. http://www.metacritic.com/music/electra-heart
  49. http://www.allmusic.com/album/electra-heart-mw0002328372
  50. http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,20609242,00.html
  51. http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/music/reviews/album-marina-and-the-diamonds-electra-heart-679atlantic-7687375.html
  52. http://www.nme.com/reviews/marina-and-the-diamonds/13082
  53. http://www.clashmusic.com/reviews/marina-and-the-diamonds-electra-heart

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