Goldfrapp's very fine 2000 debut album, Felt Mountain, was a tantalizing mix of twisted torch song, lush cinematic orchestration, and post-Massive Attack electronic beats.

Goldfrapp's very fine 2000 debut album, Felt Mountain, was a tantalizing mix of twisted torch song, lush cinematic orchestration, and post-Massive Attack electronic beats. While the British duo's sophomore set, Black Cherry, deviates from this formula, it is by no means a complete break from what came before: an air of mystery and drama remains omnipresent. This time around, though, Goldfrapp's Alison Goldfrapp and Will Gregory mine a decidedly electro-laced landscape, replete with twitchy beats and Giorgio Moroder-hued synth patterns (witness the "I Feel Love"-inflected "Strict Machine"). Elsewhere, a track like "Train" veers off into David Bowie-styled glam-rock territory, while the playfully sexy and oh-so-pop "Twist" recalls latter-day Human League—albeit with Goldfrapp's sublime vocals replacing the deadpan delivery of Phil Oakey. Of course, those desiring the Goldfrapp of three years ago are encouraged to immediately savor the title track, "Deep Honey," and "Forever."—MP