Are you ready to enter an altered state of consciousness… while entirely sober? Enter The Valentine Effect by Lucille Croft, a new EP that dropped last week via BAD WOLF HQ. Don’t let its short runtime fool you– this EP is just as immersive as full-blown concept albums six times its length. So, pop in some headphones, sit in a dark room and let yourself lose grip on reality for a while.
What do you have to lose?
Stream The Valentine Effect by Lucille Croft on Spotify:
The Valentine Effect is for the goths, the gamers, the LARPers, the ravers, the readers, and everyone in between.
That sounds like a lot, we know, but that’s the thing about Lucille Croft–when she sets out to create new music, she doesn’t just sit at her DAW and try to make some bangers. Instead, she sets out to create new worlds.
“I wanted this EP to really get you thinking – about life, death, and everything in between. […] I’m so excited for this world I’m building – with storylines, characters, and more that you’ll be able to immerse yourselves in. An escape for some, a home for others…
The Valentine Effect is my next step towards this.”-Lucille Croft
The Valentine Effect, in particular, is dark, grimy, and bewitching and has this underlying sense of danger that will render you feeling truly vulnerable, even if you’re perfectly safe.
This is because The Valentine Effect is full of brilliant and intense builds, which are complimented by her impeccable word choice. This is especially true in the opening track, “You’re Experiencing It,” which we will dissect in detail below.
‘You Need To Ask The Right Questions.’
Lucille Croft opens The Valentine Effect with a monologue clearly delivered over a distorted, unsettling backdrop that only builds in intensity as the seconds tick by. Within moments of hitting play, she informs listeners that there’s “a 91% probability that you’re currently experiencing an altered state of consciousness.”
“You’re Experiencing It” is the perfect opener for this project because in addressing the listener directly, she is making us part of this experience from the get-go. As a result, we’re tuning in deeper, even if we don’t realize it.
Except with this opening line, she is also establishing that this experience isn’t one rooted in our typical reality–our reality, for the duration of our journey through this EP, is entirely in her hands.
My favorite section is this triplet:
“I see a darkness in you.
–Does it make you feel like a god?
You need to ask the right questions.”
Everyone has a little darkness in them; it’s just a fact. However, the intensity of the darkness–and the source–are the factors that vary.
But the darkness is always there.
Because of that, this line appeals to everyone–from raver to LARPER to reader–regardless of how comfortable they are with that darkness.
The question– “does [the darkness] make you feel like a god?”–is followed by a brief pause in her monologue. Lucille Croft forces listeners to think about this concept for a moment.
Of course, most folks will immediately reject the idea. Who, ME?!
It’s a gut reaction. Who wants to embrace their darkness and have a god complex because of it?
In a typical reality, that’s frowned upon.
But not in the world of The Valentine Effect.
After letting listeners sit with this discomfort for a beat, Lucille Croft informs us that within this altered state of reality, we need to ask ourselves the right questions–including the ones we immediately reject.
The dark parts of ourselves are welcome here.
There is so much loaded into a mere moment, and it all happens within the first 30 seconds of the EP.
Lucille Croft follows with examples of what, we can presume, are “the right questions”–including ones that outright question our established reality. (“Do you see the colors? The ones that don’t exist?”) Because colors are subjective–one person’s “blue” can be another person’s “purple”–this was a perfect follow-up to the previous question, which was already making us question everything.
By now, listeners will either bail on the whole EP because the questions made them too uncomfortable–which is a shame–or they will be completely spellbound and accept that life as we know it may very well be “permanent madness” after all.
To the second group–we say, “Bravo!”
To the first group–perhaps you need to learn to “Embrace Chaos.“
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