It takes a brave person to fit a melody around the line of "For the infomercial gasmask will save us from the apocalyptic suburban demise". Remarkably this line is sung rather than narrated by ALU who also writes the intelligent but somewhat unwieldy lyrics. Together with a core group of engineers, artists and arrangers, the results are confidently and clinically delivered. Admittedly some of the dark trip-hop arrangements belong to a time in the late 90's and for the first half of the record there's not much to get excited about. After this point, however, ALU's more imaginative side takes hold as she breaks out from her studied vibrato to add layers of emotion to the mix. 'Ordinary Deity' and 'Big Box, Little Box' are quirky and different, 'Stigma' is a classy ballad and by 'Lady X' ALU has found a high level of intimacy only hinted at in the beginning of this record. In short, modern gothic ballads for the heart and the mind.