Cindy Lee is the diva alter-ego of singer / guitarist / drag queen Patrick Flegel, the one-time captain of heralded Canadian experimental guitar pop act, Women. In Flegel’s working on / as Cindy Lee exclusively over recent years, their songwriting makes a move toward high atmospherics, often achieving a mysterious sweetness rooted equally in beauty and ache. As Cindy Lee’s first long-form statement, Act Of Tenderness makes use of antipodal themes to create a living sound: static with grace, distortion and sugar, all masterfully arranged with crooked nods toward pop classicism. The layered vocal on “Power And Possession” creates a palpable haunt, bringing historical girl-group lament to choir-esque heights. The feedback shriek and industrial grind of “Bonsai Garden” provides near-operatic damage, yet never stumbles into the irrevocably grave. These snowy pieces give the album a decidedly cinematic feel, albeit one bent more towards Eraserhead. Originally released in a scant private edition in 2015, Superior Viaduct’s imprint W.25TH is pleased to give Act Of Tenderness its deserving wide release.