In 2010 The Crown Jewels catapulted Marina Diamandis into the spotlight and to her credit, bona-fide pop stardom, with eccentric hits like 'Mowgli’s Road' and 'I Am Not A Robot' proving irresistible to the po-faced alternative crowd (speaking for myself anyway) as well as the manic teenage mainstream. And it proved that this raven-haired songstress was just as happy to flaunt her brain, as her looks.

Enter Electra Heart, a concept album about the exploits of the titular alter-ego. With track names such as 'Bubblegum Bitch', 'Primadonna Girl', 'Homewrecker', 'Power and Control', and 'Valley of the Dolls' you can see that at the crux of Electra Heart is a slightly over-insistent melange of self-reflexive sexuality as well as themes of corruption and frustration.

As expected, Electra Heart is a very different beast to The Crown Jewels; even more commercial, more smoothly paced and produced as a result. It stands to reason, as Marina collaborated on a large number of tracks with international hit-makers (Dr. Phil, Diplo etc), and it's easy to see how her more sensitive side has taken a back seat in the face of thumping bass lines all over the place.  

It's still the voice you know (and love?) but leaner, maybe a little meaner. Marina still enjoys the capacity to raise hairs on the back of my neck with her vocal inflections, but it's a shame they're often set to bland backing tracks, such as the pseudo-dub drops of 'Lies'; especially in light of the brilliant acoustic sessions she's been releasing, and the more pared back, piano led 'Hypocrates' and the seriously promising album closer 'Fear and Loathing'.  

That said, it'd be a disservice to omit the joy of Marina’s tongue-in-cheek theatrics on tracks like 'Teen Idle', and stand out, hyper-saccharine tracks 'Primadonna', 'Bubblegum Bitch' and the wonderfully 80s 'Living Dead' can’t be faulted for sheer pop goodness.

Electra Heart is a naturally glossy if not promising progression for the young songstress, and the majority of the album is still eminently fun. Ultimately though, I can't help but feel like Marina and Electra aren't quite a match made in heaven, and though it's a side of her personality she's obviously felt a real need to express, it's still the moments that Marina shines through that are the best. And when she does, it's easy to remember about that first love affair.