As Vic Reeves used to say when asked about how one of his ingenious inventions (such as Licky-Kicky The Home Security Dog) worked: ‘I dunno. But it does.’ His response was so on-point it would have driven to distraction the high-strung attendees of countless product insight focus groups; some things just work.

Vinyl sales may have risen, fallen, and risen again, the format’s actual survival questioned pretty significantly at one stage, but right now it has carved itself a niche that no subsequent recording format can claim. Vinyl survived not because of the quality of it and its competitors’ constituent elements - sound quality, durability, ease of use - but because it connects to a new generation of listeners who recognise not just its primal beauty and heft, but the ineluctable thread they are weaving into their own music collections by owning a ‘thing’. A digital music collection isn’t a thing; it’s a subscription you buy to allow you to access a mainframe, with an in-built time limit. For vinyl, and to some extent tape, there is something beyond the basic elements of its appeal – vinyl carries soft power.

Rhye's debut Woman had plenty of soft power. A startlingly intrusive emotional core made the album a standout success in the years following its 2013 release, and the extended period of rumour that preceded it, developing out of the duo's early online flickerings and the androgynous mystery of those vocals. That record continues to attract new devotees, tentatively drawn into the pining seduction of an album stripped back and tailored almost to transparency. Their sophomore effort clings rigidly to that album's template with precious little diminution in quality.

On their second album, Blood, Rhye cling so tightly to a successful script that it's perhaps more enlightening to pick out the songs that seek to shift into new terrain. 'Blood Knows' has something of the spiralling drama of James Blake's debut, without all the sonic bluster. The track tempts vocalist Milosh out of his usually restrained falsetto, carrying the album momentarily out of its lilting sexuality. Much was made of Woman's 'sex pop' credentials - you could make a case for the follow up soundtracking a more complicated, angrier bang. Make-up sex.

The analogy with the vinyl format is most clear on tracks like 'Phoenix'. Although the record as a whole proudly waves the flag for analogue instrumentation with very little obvious digital chopping or pasting, songs often bring together many different, briefly realised elements that are more common to composite music. The layered guitars on Phoenix - including a preening, Lethal Weapon-esque distorted guitar squeal - reveal that this is very much a duo masquerading, to some extent, as a full band.

Not that that has any negative bearing on the whole. The balance between the twin elements of vocal and backing is as pitch perfect as ever, allowing Milosh space to glide over fully developed landscapes. If anything, the scales are tipped towards the backing track on the epic, Stevie Wonder-recalling 'Softly'.

Some bands are lucky and talented enough to find a format that works and just make hay with it. Rhye are plainly in love with their formula on Blood. The result is a finely balanced gem.