Secondhand Rapture
Creep City/Columbia
Street: 05.14
MS MR = Marina and the Diamonds + Florence And The Machine
It is something of a small miracle that the New York based duo of Lizzy Plapinger (she being the ‘ms’) and Max Hershenow (and he the ‘mr’) have made a rarity in today’s music world— a consistently solid debut record.  Co-produced by the pair and Tom Elmhirst, who had a hand in both Amy Winehouse and Adele’s Grammy wins, a few of these songs have already made an impact online, like the fantastically layered single “Hurricane,” and the striking “Bones” (used in a promo for Game Of Thrones).  These are fairly representative of the duo’s sound: dark without sounding goth and mopey, pop-y without sounding cheesy.  With their lyrics being fairly heavy (like “Twenty Seven”), it would be easy for lesser skilled hands to makes these songs sink, but part of the charm is that they offer a nice balance between Plapinger’s pleasantly raspy vocals and Hershenow’s dark soundscapes. –Dean O Hillis