The Goldfrapp cure for party-girl hangovers

Best song on the album? Obviously “A&E.”

Listening to Goldfrapp is an experience akin to being magically transported back through the eras by a Warhol Factory-silver time machine, crash-landing in the center of that pleasure palace of days gone by, Studio 54. Except in lieu of its former glamorous denizens like Liza Minnelli and Mikhail Baryshnikov, we are grooving on a crystalline dance floor alongside beautiful blonde British space creature Alison Goldfrapp and her multitalented Svengali Will Gregory, who creates the musical canvas for Alison.

Their previous releases, namely “Supernature,” would have been perfectly at home blasted from the speakers of that legendary discotheque – the soundtrack to too many glasses of champagne and a handful of uppers. But “Seventh Tree,” the duo’s newest album, turns the tables, playing the role of the two-aspirin-and-a-glass-of-water cure from a danced-all-night hangover.

When Goldfrapp is good, which is often, they’re a throwback to the golden age of ’70s glitter rock. In the blink of an eye, Alison morphs from a cool and demure English ice princess to a slinky, sexy female version of T. Rex’s legendary glam front man Marc Bolan. She’s chameleon-esque, with her warmly ethereal voice transforming and transposing fluidly to suit the music offered. But when they’re boring, they’re snoozers indeed. No slickly glittering goodness exists like the pair’s ubiquitous “Ooh La La” (off “Supernature,”) amid the infinite calm of “Seventh Tree.” If you’re looking to twirl around the room till the wee small hours of the morning, look elsewhere, because “Seventh Tree” is much more trip-hop than dance pop.

There’s no doubt that Goldfrapp graduated from the Phil Spector University of Song Design, for his pioneering “Wall of Sound” technique is unmistakable on “Seventh Tree” and in all of their previous works. Instead of simply listening to the cacophony, you are immersed inside the music. You can actually feel songs like “Little Bird” as they release themselves from your speakers, taking wing on a honeysuckle-scented warm breeze across your room and through your eardrums.

It’s also undeniable that these songs are lovely and as intricately crafted as a fluttery chiffon dress. They are weightless, candy spun, fading into one another the way dreams do.

“A&E” is a gorgeous example of an album standout. In this instance, “A&E” becomes “accident and emergency,” as Goldfrapp pleads and compares her romance-starved self to the chaos of a car accident. Only “Caravan Girl” retains the upbeat splendor of the Goldfrapp that club kids know and love, but it’s still not quite as fun as “Beautiful” or “Ooh La La.”

The major strength of the duo lies in Alison’s deliciously multifaceted voice. She coos, she whispers, she belts, she murmurs; her voice literally floats above the lush musical backdrop. Equally transfixing is the orchestration her mini-Mozart Gregory provides, a flourishing kaleidoscope of sounds and instruments. The duo falters a few times, with the somnambular “Eat Yourself” and “Clowns,” a track which would have been done much better by fellow Brits, Portishead. But the album flows together perfectly, creating a welcoming, dreamlike atmosphere for its listener.

“Seventh Tree” is perfectly pleased to paint the landscape of your life and do nothing more with its wistful, hazy watercolors. It doesn’t want to keep you shimmying all night, nor does it aim to force-feed bubbly down your throat. It’s content to just be pretty, like a supermodel at a dinner party. Nothing revolutionary gets brought to the table, but that’s just fine.

“Seventh Tree” is something different. It’s not a perfect slice of disco-ball glitter perfection like “Supernature,” but one does tend to get quite sick after too much sugar, no? After all that partying, a bit of quiet is just what you need to combat those champagne-soaked spins.