The title of Let’s Eat Grandma’s debut album provides a big clue as to what makes this genre mutating duo tick. ‘I, Gemini’ is the work of teenaged, Norwich based best friends Rosa Walton and Jenny Hollingworth, and it’s a creation that speaks to their lifelong, extremely close bond. Comparisons have been made with the creepy twins from The Shining (the two intentionally dress in the same style and wear their hair in identical long wavy manes), and there is an unsettling quality to some of the sonic landscapes they conjure to express their own private world, but LEG’s compositions manage to consistently surprise and intrigue as opposed to sounding forced to fit some cynically preconceived ‘freak synth pop’ marketing strategy.
For one thing, hearing a single track from the album hardly prepares you for the array of textures and instruments, all played by Rosa and Jenny, that are to be encountered throughout the record as a whole. With shades of Björk, CocoRosie, Grimes and even Ellie Goulding at times, their vocals carry soaring, sweet melodies with ease, but the duo seem just as comfortable using their voices in less predictable ways: sauntering unfazed into a peppy rap on Eat Shitake Mushrooms, or chanting about baking on Chocolate Sludge Cake in a way that pulls the mundane out of context, tingeing it with the surreal through repetition.
Their unrelenting experimentation allows LEG to avoid getting mired in electronic music’s chillier, more monochrome palettes, whilst confidently skirting the associations with tweeness that tend to be made as soon as the recorder, ukulele or xylophone are mentioned. Playing this record feels a bit like listening to the soundtrack to a fairytale that’s far more Grimms’ than Disney, and all the more interesting for that.