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Maybe you've never heard of Jenn Vix. The best things in life are often hidden or perhaps less visible. Anyway, she comes from Rhode Island, and has published three interesting albums and a handful of singles in the last twenty years. In addition, she can boast collaboration with some remarkable figures of Brit music, now including John Ashton, of The Psychedelic Furs. These songs surf the brainwaves, stimulating them in different ways. Enjoyable and complex at one time.

Ashton unleashes his guitar on "The Woman With No Fear," powerful and captivating. "Don't Let Go," and the title track, "Strange Buildings" materialise the pulsating beat of a certain new wave, tinged with pop. With "Let Me In," the beat goes on, still back in the eighties, but adding some dark clouds to the landscape.

However, the best comes at the end with the lucid dream of "Weirdo." The acoustic guitar wraps Jenn's voice with evanescent accents, with a relevant docility. It flows away like prickly raindrops in the wind, linking with a coloured hyphen, the light taste of some prog songs of the seventies to the post-punk. This EP confirms Jenn Vix as a superb vocalist and a quite brilliant artist.

Earlier this year I had the opportunity to talk with John Ashton, formerly of The Psychedelic Furs about his new project, Satellite Paradiso. The band’s debut album showed Mr. Ashton & company moving on from the shadow of the ‘Furs, forging their own unique identity. It rates as one of my favorite albums of the last year or so. When I got wind that John Ashton featured on two tracks on Jen Vix’s new EP, Strange Buildings, I knew I had to give it a spin. Jenn Vix hails from Providence, Rhode Island and has forged an independent path whilst working with such luminaries as Reeves Gabrels (David Bowie, The Cure, Jeffrey Gaines), and Andy Anderson (The Cure). Her latest EP just might be her finest work to date, Ashton’s guitar work providing a complimentary element to Vix’s soulful vocal delivery.

 

The Woman With No Fear leads off the EP and is also the single. Not surprisingly it is the strongest tune on the record. Vix’s vocals are delivered with a passionate sense of urgency – you get the sense that these lyrics are coming straight from the heart. 1 of the 2 songs featuring John Ashton, he provides abrasive yet melodic riffs. The chorus is where the whole thing comes together, sounding like a lost gem from the early 80’s. Don’t Let Go shifts tones to the dance floor – killer bass line and beat, with Jenn again delivering impassioned vocals. The title track is a slow burner of a tune, synth flourishes giving it a slight New Order vibe. Weirdo is the 2nd track featuring John Ashton, and again – it just kills. Slower in tempo, lyrically and in vibe it reminds me a bit of Nico during her 80’s dalliance with New Wave. It’s a track I return to repeatedly. “camera obscura visions appear to me / I just don’t understand what i see”

 

Verdict: New Wave Gem

For Fans Of: The Psychedelic Furs, Nico, The Cure, Siouxsie and the Banshees, The Slits

Jenn Vix (feat John Ashton) - The Woman With No Fear.

Background - Jenn Vix has been releasing music for 15 years, her self-titled debut album on her own label, coming out in 1995 received glowing reviews in Rolling Stone amongst others. Further albums included collaborations with Reeves Gabrels of The Cure and David Bowie’s band, Andy Anderson formerly of The Cure and electro industrial artist Dirk Ivens.

‘The Woman With No Fear’ is the first single from the the new ‘Strange Buildings E.P.’ which comprises of five tracks, with two of them "The Woman With No Fear” and "Weirdo” featuring former Psychedelic Furs Guitarist, John Ashton, on rhythm guitar.

No surprises regarding the driving guitar on the featured song, however Jenn's singing is superbly matched for this type of music. Vocally she reminds me in part of Julie Driscoll, and as a fan of her music (and also the Psychedelic Furs) this is a double helping of delight for me. The five songs on the EP differ quite a lot, both in pace and musical styles, all of them, are really strong. If you like  'The Woman With No Fear', grab the EP.

Vix note: Again, it's been more than 15 years, but my publicist at the time made a typo in my press release.

Having been releasing music for fifteen years, and collaborated with the likes of Reeves Gabrels and Andy Anderson of The Cure, Jenn Vix is now back with a brand new five-track EP.

Taken from the EP, new track ‘The Woman With No Fear’ features former Psychedelic Furs guitarist, John Ashton, on rhythm guitar, and is an impassioned and powerful offering; a cinematic treat for the ears that should not be missed.

Watch the new video for ‘The Woman With No Fear’ here:

Vix Note: It's been a bit longer than 15 years, but my publicist at the time made a typo in my press release.

Over this last year, Rhode Island’s Jenn Vix has offered up two very fine single tracks that Popdose has had the pleasure of introducing you to.  Now the Rhode Island native serves up a terrific five-song e.p.; this time, she’s aided and abetted by legendary guitarist John Ashton of Satellite Paradiso and formerly of The Psychedelic Furs.  The combination of crunchy guitars, strong melodies and some highly danceable beats add up to a great offering of songs.

The first track, accompanied by a video, is the highly tuneful “The Woman With No Fear” – powerful, interesting lyric and a sultry vocal that carries the song perfectly, especially on the chorus; “Don’t Let Go” has a pure early-’80’s kind of electro-dance feel with some sharp guitar stabs that fill the track and “Let Me In” carries me right back to the club days of my youth – I can imagine hearing this on the late, great WLIR.  Ms. Vix’s voice is a wonderful instrument on its own; warm and embracing, yet cooly sexy and it’s evident on this track.

All five songs fit together perfectly; the blend is just right – and at a time when high-quality releases are sorely needed, this E.P. comes along like a tonic.  I’ve enjoyed much of Jenn Vix’s music before but with the Strange Buildings E.P., she’s onto something truly special.

HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

Another melodic eye-opener from Rhode Island’s (somewhat prolific) Jenn Vix.  This singer-songwriter knows how to write a melody and use electronic instruments to make it sound warm, human, emotional and passionate.  On this seemingly personal new track, “I Don’t Trust You”, she makes her feelings known and gets the message across so that you can’t help but take the intended feelings to heart and mind.

Aside from her compositional gifts, she’s once again, aided and abetted by legendary drummer Andy Anderson (who anchored The Cure’s kit for several years in the very early ’80’s).  And again, the beauty of Jenn Vix’s work is that although the songs are framed with an electronic foundation, “human” drums and guitars cut across to emphasize the sheer power and to heighten the melody.

Listen – download – BUY.  Jenn Vix is one artist you will want to investigate, embrace and return to, over and over again.

HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

This is Vix’s second release featuring Andy Anderson. The first collaboration track was released in March of this year, and is titled “Eyes Roll Back.”

Vix has also recently recorded and released tracks featuring guitarist, Reeves Gabrels; formerly of David Bowie, and currently of The Cure.

Jenn Vix’s full-length, debut album, received a three and a half star review, in Rolling Stone magazine. Her recent single, featuring Reeves Gabrels, received an excellent review in Sound & Vision magazine, from the editor in chief.

This is excellent – and not in my usual line of musical vision.  Tuneful, haunting, melodic, catchy and reminiscent in the best possible way of what I loved in the early ’80’s.  Jenn Vix, who has previously been recognized by Rolling Stone, releases this wonderful new single, aided and abetted by ex-Cure drummer Andy Anderson and guitarist Mark Montalto, to deliver a memorable track that I can’t get enough of.  Her voice is striking; warm, enveloping and emotional.  And the intesting nuance is in the production, where it doesn’t sound “over-retro” and too much like one may think, keeping the human touch in the performance.  While she has a stellar track record of releases behind her, Ms. Vix certainly has a very bright 2015 ahead, indicated by this fine song.

 

HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

A Need For "Speed"
I am beyond enamored with "Speed Of Light," a haunting collaboration in 9/8 between Jenn Vix and Reeves Gabrels, wherein electronic music fuses with otherworldly guitar. It's, well, auralgasmic. Why does it sound so mysteriously, eerily good? "I record into Cubase using MIDI keys, but I record live passes," Vix explains. "I don't use sequencers, and I put Reeves's guitar parts through a ping-pong delay." Download this seductive song now on iTunes or CD Baby.
Jenn Vix note: This track is also now available at all streaming sites; Spotify, etc... and at jennvixmusic.bandcamp.com

It seems to be high time for me to spread some mystery all around: Jenn Vix and Reeves Gabrels have recently released a new track “Speed of Light” and I cannot wait to review it. But first of all, let me present you Jenn Vix and Reeves Gabrels. Jenn Vix is an artist from Providence, Rhode Island, who has managed to master practically all roles possible in a band: vocals, songwriting, bass guitar, synths, drums, lead guitar and even some programming. The music genres associated with her work are electronic, independent. Jenn released her self-titled debut album on her own label, Umbrella, in 1995 and it was reviewed in Rolling Stone magazine. Since then she has found her niche and her loyal fans. Vix’s third album, “3″, was very successful.

Reeves Gabrels – “one of the most daring rock-guitar improvisers since Jimi Hendrix”. He is famous and respected for his long partnership with David Bowie, but he has worked with many other known bands and artists from all over the world. “He is recognized for virtuosity and versatility, a guitar player who can explore sonic extremes with a great, adaptive intuition for what each song needs most.” Since 2012, he performs with The Cure. This duet creates pieces of art like the track “Speed of Light”.

The song “Speed of Light” is rather long and develops slowly and softly. It is very moody: putting the listeners into the mystic atmosphere of the space. Like other works by Jenn Vix, it is a somewhat gothic, but at the same time the guitar passages in the major scale help to create very pleasant and cosmic feelings. Some people believe that these kinds of instrumental tracks can be boring, but I can insist that it is not the case withe “Speed of Light”. It has interesting effects and back vocals, as well as the very beautiful and distinct voice of Jenn supporting the spirit of the song and making it special. I personally can put it on a replay mode and enjoy it for hours.

To sum up, I recommend that you to listen carefully to the “Speed of Light” track as it is high quality music performed by professional and respected musicians; furthermore, it is an unusual partnership so don’t miss this opportunity. Who knows, maybe it will go to the top song of your playlist.

 

Providence, RI native, Jenn Vix, played virtually all of the instruments on her self-titled debut album. "Devils Chasing Angels" is an airy, dreamy pop song, with wisps of synthesizers coiled around tenderils of Vix's trademark watery bass sound.

Jenn Vix had her self-titled, debut disc, reviewed in this weeks' Rolling Stone - an impressive feat for an independent effort, considering the hundreds of albums the magazine receives. Writer Paul Evans wrote that Vix sounded "perpetually enraptured."