12 Songs, 42 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

The English-born artist Janine Rostron conceived her Planningtorock persona in Berlin in the '90s. Her shows incorporate visuals (masks, video, costumes) into a bewitching brew of electronica, classical music, hip-hop, and whatever else seems to float her way in a creative moment. Her voice naturally evokes artists from Jimmy Somerville (of the great Bronski Beat), Annie Lennox, and her friends and sometimes collaborators The Knife (mostly when she uses electronics to pitch and shift her voice, especially into deep, dark places.) Planningtorock’s music is inarguably unique. Though disco-driven songs like “Living It Out” and the sexually aggressive “I’m Yr Man” allude to dancefloor culture, Rostron manages to avoid dance-music clichés. She dishes out a wide range of beats with some authority and eschews the “electronic music” label by being so much more—cabaret, experimental, and pop elements all color All Love’s Legal. From the opening track, “Doorway”—which could fit neatly in a work by TV on the Radio—it’s clear that the third album by this remarkable artist will be an adventure in listening.

EDITORS’ NOTES

The English-born artist Janine Rostron conceived her Planningtorock persona in Berlin in the '90s. Her shows incorporate visuals (masks, video, costumes) into a bewitching brew of electronica, classical music, hip-hop, and whatever else seems to float her way in a creative moment. Her voice naturally evokes artists from Jimmy Somerville (of the great Bronski Beat), Annie Lennox, and her friends and sometimes collaborators The Knife (mostly when she uses electronics to pitch and shift her voice, especially into deep, dark places.) Planningtorock’s music is inarguably unique. Though disco-driven songs like “Living It Out” and the sexually aggressive “I’m Yr Man” allude to dancefloor culture, Rostron manages to avoid dance-music clichés. She dishes out a wide range of beats with some authority and eschews the “electronic music” label by being so much more—cabaret, experimental, and pop elements all color All Love’s Legal. From the opening track, “Doorway”—which could fit neatly in a work by TV on the Radio—it’s clear that the third album by this remarkable artist will be an adventure in listening.

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About Planningtorock

The alter ego of multi-instrumentalist/programmer/videographer Janine Rostron, Planningtorock fuses all of Rostron's talents into a dazzling audio-visual presentation that borrows from classical music, glam rock, spacy imagery, and hip-hop. A classically trained violinist who began playing at age eight, Rostron moved from Bolton, Lancashire, to Berlin in the early '90s; the Planningtorock persona first surfaced in 2002, when she began performing at the city's clubs. Planningtorock's live shows blurred the boundaries between concerts and performance art, with Rostron wearing outlandish helmets and costumes and interacting with video characters. Planningtorock's debut single Modern Love and the Weimar Tour EP arrived early the following year and showcased Rostron's unique mix of pizzicato strings, beats, and husky vocals that could change from bluesy to quirky (or vice versa) at a moment's notice. In 2004, Rostron issued the MP3 EP Topics on a Foreign Mind via Twisted Nerve Records, as well as EP Eins -- which featured the underground hit "Local Foreigner" -- on her own Rostron imprint (which also released work by the Knife, the Soft Pink Truth, and Kevin Blechdom). After signing to Chicks on Speed Records, Planningtorock released the limited-edition 7" Changes/I Wanna Bite Ya early in 2006 and her first full-length, Have It All, that summer. In 2010, she collaborated with the Knife and Mt. Sims on the Charles Darwin-inspired opera Tomorrow, in a Year. For her second Planningtorock album, 2011's W, Rostron moved to DFA and adopted a fuller, more ambitious sound. By 2014's All Love's Legal, Rostron changed her first name to the more androgynous Jam, reflecting the album's manifesto for transnational gender equality. ~ Heather Phares

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Top Albums by Planningtorock

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