The Ins & Outs
The Ins & Outs
Irina Janevski and Maurice Giraud
|Origin||Arnak, Herlan, Gylias|
|Labels||Digital Orgasm Records|
The Ins & Outs are a Gylian electronic music duo, formed in 1988 in Arnak. Their members are Irina Janevski (vocals, instruments, programming) and Maurice Giraud (instruments, programming). Their music is famous for its outrageously sexual and tongue-in-cheek lyrics, and its exploration of multiple genres of electronic dance music.
In the late 1980s, Maurice Giraud was active in Arnak's electronic music scene, and had released several locally successful white label singles. Working in a nightclub, he met Irina Janevski, a popular pornographic actress with ambitions to begin a musical career. They decided to form a band.
The name "Ins & Outs" was chosen after considering various double entendre names. One of the rejected ones, "Digital Orgasm", was repurposed as the name of their record label.
Their debut album, Lust, was released in 1991. Musically it largely took from contemporary techno, acid house, and rave music, and established their trademark of tongue-in-cheek, exaggerated lyrics. The album received mostly positive reviews, with some criticism aimed at its repetitive song structures. Three of its songs became hits: "The Most Wonderful Girl", "I Sit on Acid", and "I Must Increase My Bust" — the latter finding a subsequent audience among the nénédie genre.
The Ins & Outs' first tour, in support of Lust, saw Maurice's brother Gilles join as an additional live musician. Their concerts attracted attention for their humorous dynamic, contrasting Irina's vivid stage presence with Maurice's deep concentration on his instruments.
Irina and Maurice's relationship became romantic as a result of their work together, and they married in 1992.
Their second album, Voodoo-U (1994), had a more rock-influenced sound, including live guitars and fast-paced drum and bass beats. Irina had also taken vocal lessons in the meantime, and joked in interviews that she'd "learned to sing" for the album. The album had a mixed reception, with the chant-based songs getting more criticism than the songs with full lyrics. The only songs to gain airplay success were the dance-rock "Young Boys" and the hip hop-oriented "Blowing Up Your Mind".
To support the album, they played their first concerts outside Gylias — mainly concentrating on Cacerta, Akashi, and Delkora.
Our Little Secret (1997) showcased the band's tongue-in-cheek humour: the packaging presented the album as a recording of a classical music concert, and it began with a sample of Kaida Rakodi's catchphrase, "Quiet please, this is an opera." The album deepened the band's exploration of dance-rock, and it restored them to critical favour, although its distribution figures proved to be mediocre.
The subsequent tour marked the first time the Ins & Outs played live with a full band of backing musicians. The Syaran leg of the tour, their first visit to Irina's homeland, was cut short when Irina was arrested for stripping naked and masturbating on stage during "The Most Wonderful Girl", causing them to be deported.
Assembled out of previously unreleased tracks and new material, Heaven Is an Orgasm (1998) became the Ins & Outs' most commercially successful album, largely driven by the success of "Am I Sexy?". The song's retro groove and colourful music video brought them much exposure at the height of the Neo-Gylian Sound and city pop scenes, while it turned out to be an anomaly on the album, which otherwise stuck to their trademark sound. Maurice recalled "many disappointed music journalists and fans who got the album expecting it all to sound like 'Am I Sexy?' and finding out it didn't."
The Ins & Outs spent the next two years on their longest tour, playing 70 shows in total across Tyran. In between gigs, they recorded their next album, Farstucker (2000), which concentrated on arena-oriented, danceable industrial metal, and saw integral contributions from the live band.
They spent the next decade on an unofficial hiatus, with Maurice concentrating on production and remixing work, while Irina both acted in and produced pornographic films.
Their fifth studio album Deep Chills (2012) contained an almost equal ratio of rock-oriented songs and dance tracks, as did their follow-up Pretty in Kink (2018). Maurice acknowledged the "retro" acid house and techno sound of the dance songs in interviews, claiming that he felt "disconnected" from contemporary dance music.
The Ins & Outs are an electronic music band, and have explored various subgenres, including acid house, techno, drum and bass, rave music, dance-rock, and industrial metal.
As the frontwoman, Irina is known for her tongue-in-cheek hypersexual image, carried over from her pornographic career. Her lyrics heavily use the "enlightenment through excess" literary device, jokingly presenting herself as an insatiable nymphomaniac and obsessive hedonist. Most of her songs deal with various aspects of sexuality, along with a few that treat other hedonistic themes such as drug use and gambling.
Throughout her career and oeuvre, Irina heavily emphasises her Syaran ethnicity, making it an integral part of her sex appeal. In its review of Deep Chills, Musical Update praised Irina's "cheeky, whip-crack spirit", and wrote that the band "amassed a discography admirable for its deeply principled hedonism and its unwavering positivity in encouraging self-acceptance". Radix similarly commented that "beneath the Ins & Outs' campy naughtiness is an inspirational fight to encourage listeners to reject shame and wave their freak flags high."
The Ins & Outs' concerts are known for their debauched atmosphere and comedic contrast between Irina's vivacious, sexually-charged stage presence and the rest of the band's comparatively static presentation. The eroticism of their shows has caused controversy and arrests in several jurisdictions.
- Irina Janevski (Syaran: Ирина Јаневски; Gylic transcription: Irina Ianevyski; born 10 October 1960) — vocals, keyboards, programming, various instruments
- Maurice Giraud (Gylic transcription: Moris Jiró; born 15 September 1959) — keyboards, programming, various instruments, backing vocals
|1997||Our Little Secret||Studio album|
|1998||Heaven Is an Orgasm||Studio album|
|2012||Deep Chills||Studio album|
|2018||Pretty in Kink||Studio album|