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Grace Darling

Country of origin:


Type of music generally:

Gothic experimental alternative


Only release, Grace Darling (two versions), 1992, though a further album, Invisible, was briefly available on their website (five songs from this album are available there for download)

See also:

The Grace Darling site


A more ethereal/funky Caterwaul. (

Ars Poetica, Big Hat, Tel Basta, Hugo Largo... (Neile)

skinnerbox. (

Covers/own material:


General comments:

Please note this is the group, not the vocalist by this name.

I *love* this band! Female vocalist Val Martino uses a very unusual voice on some tracks. I just found their web site, and because I found it a few months late, I missed getting their new album in its entirety FREE on MP3. *SIGH a few thousand times* Val Martino's voice is still as wonderful as ever. Gregory A. Simpson's songs are still as wonderful as ever. It's nice to know they haven't disappeared off the face of the earth. Still, we can enjoy the songs that are still there. (

grace darling reminds me more of the equally obscure skinnerbox than hugo largo. at least musically since grace darling uses mucho synths where hugo largo uses basses and violins. however, they do share sonic space as both are fairly quiet, intense and dark. (

Recommended first album:

Grace Darling (either version you can find)


Grace Darling (two versions)

Grace Darling

Release info:

1992; There are 2 versions of this album. The first is on Sardonic Sounds (U.S.), the second is on C'est la Mort U.S.)—Sardonic Sounds SD 001; C'est la Mort 037-2


If you're very very lucky you will find this used somewhere

Ecto priority:

*MUST HAVE*, just because I say so! (

Group members:

Val Martino-vocals
Gregory A. Simpson—instruments


I *love* this album! I have both versions, because they each contain songs that the other doesn't.
Version 1 (Sardonic Sounds)        Version 2 (C'est la Mort)
 1. Cursing A Muse (Invocation)     1. Opening
 2. Iemanja                         2. Cursing A Muse (Invocation)
 3. Lou's Lips                      3. Iemanja
 4. A Slice Of This                 4. Illusionarium
 5. Glove                           5. Telegraph Hill
 6. Transportation                  6. Lou's Lips
 7. Inside Me                       7. A Slice Of This
 8. Bleed                           8. There
 9. Sleep Knows No Melody           9. I Bury My Love
10. Purgatory                      10. Purgatory
11. Surf's Up                      11. Surf's Up
12. Oracle                         12. Sleep Knows No Melody
13. Open Air Cafe                  13. Inside Me
14. Glove
15. The Open Air Cafe
I really don't understand this. They dropped 3 songs from the first version and though they added 5 wonderful songs, I just don't see any reason for them dropping the 3 songs they did.Time-wise, they didn't have to drop any! I suppose I'm most upset because they dropped the song "Transportation" which is one of my very favorites from the 1st version. Ah well, what can you do? (

It's a strange and wonderful album. The only comparison musically I can think of is equally obscure Hugo Largo. It's a dark but not bleak or Gothic album, with quite pop-y moments ("A Slice of This") and some haunting moments. Delightful to listen to! I wish they had done more. (Neile)

Thanks to Vickie Mapes for work on this entry.

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DISCLAIMER: Comments and reviews in the Ectophiles' Guide are excerpted from the ecto mailing list or volunteered by members of the list. They are the opinions of music enthusiasts, not professional music critics.

Entry last updated 2013-09-01 16:32:05.
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