History has been made! On August 12th, Tahliah Barnett, FKA twigs, released her first international album, “LP1″ and kick started her UK and US tour. The fairy godmother of trippy indie graced the stage of the El Rey Theatre in a silk, white pajama suit adorned with a gold body chain staring down the audience as a cheetah would stare down it’s prey. And prey on us she did. Her shy, angelic presence can be overwhelmingly felt in every note she sings. Whimsically belting about young love enduring the ups and downs, ins and outs, and rising above the all too common heartbreak.
She allows us to enter her kingdom as one would begin a fairytale book, with “Preface,” blasting you off into orbit around her beautiful, galactic mind. Her two singles, “Two Weeks” and “Pendulum,” laid the foundation for the release, demanding you give her only two weeks to make her way into your head, and certainly in to your heart. In the visuals she provides, she sits at her throne while her images dance around her. Tired of hanging in the balance, effortlessly trying to show that she’s worth the time while he’s looking for more elsewhere.
“You’re younger than I am broken,
I dance feelings like they’re spoken.
So my conversation’s not enough.”
In the tracks “Closer” and “Give Up,” you hear the yearning of every 20-something lady in an on again, off again relationship; trust and unconditional acceptance. Don’t let “Hours” go by without noticing, either. Super sexy and sultry, a punch drunk love anthem that invites you to communicate without words. A challenge many couples should take up like the #ALSIceBucketChallenge (donate too, please).
All in all, it embodies all the sexiness that a lady has while still wrangling with her emotions, from insecurities to empowerment. I seriously can’t pick a single track that I favor over another; every time I listen to this album I hear another note, or a new verse that I relate to, that impacts me so deeply.
If you haven’t gotten a chance to watch her live, allow her to pull you into a beautiful melodic trance so deep you’ll lose track of time. She’s in the UK until the end of October, returning to Washington, D.C. in November for the latter half. Her US dates are as listed:
11/6 – Washington, D.C. @ 9:30 Club
11/7 – Philadelphia, PA @ Union Transfer
11/8 – New York, NY @ Terminal 5
11/11 – Boston, MA @ Brighton Music Hall
11/13 – Chicago, IL @ Metro
11/14 – Minneapolis, MN @ Fine Line
11/17 – Vancouver, British Columbia @ Commodore
11/18 – Seattle, WA @ Showbox
11/20 – San Francisco, CA @ Regency
11/21 – Los Angeles, CA @ Regent
11/26 – Austin, TX @ Parish
11/28 – Dallas, TX @ Trees
11/29 – New Orleans, LA @ Republic
12/1 – Nashville, TN @ Mercy Lounge
12/2 – Atlanta, GA @ Terminal West
12/3 – Orlando, FL @ The Social
For more information on her tour dates and tickets, check them out here.
The last time we heard from New Zealand grown singer, Kimbra, it was with the release of her 2011 album, Vows. The genre-bending album with singles like: “Settle Down” and “Cameo Lover” proved that Kimbra had what many consider staying power. Not only did she know how to write memorable and timeless songs (“Call Me”) she could also use her voice as a musical weapon of sorts. The album also drew several uncanny parallels to singer Regina Skeptor. After the release, Kimbra was also the saving grace in many people’s opinion for her Gotye collaboration for “Somebody That I Used To Know” which won a Grammy. After nearly three years, Kimbra is now back with her sophomore album The Golden Echo, out today via Warner Brothers.
Rumor has it that in order to create her latest installment, Kimbra had to cut 70 recorded songs down to 12. My only fear in with doing this, Kimbra left off some of the gems that would have made this album better. With Vows, I could honestly say that there were perhaps two skippable songs for me in the form of the single “Cameo Lover” which was tolerable just too visible as well as, “Sally I Can See You.” This time around, only five songs (out of 15 including bonus tracks) have left a mark on me from the first few listens. Kimbra is a champion of pulling from multiple genres and multiple sounds which is always reflected in her music but this time around it feels dizzy. The album just sounds a little scattered, and although it was the work of great collaborators; John Legend, Thundercat, Flying Lotus, Bilal and Van Dyke, it sounds a little bit unfocused, yet somewhat more psychedelic with the contributions of Thundercat’s bass.
In terms of the high points on the album, the first comes into the form of the intro track “Teen Heat.” For the track, Kimbra sings about the complexities of adolescent love – having it, losing it. The harmonies on the track are love, as well as the lyrics. “Goldmine” is a catchy song with a confident chant of sorts. “Rescue Him” which Kimbra wrote with Empire of the Sun’s Surahn Sidhu. The song is laced with an interesting hybrid of soul and synth pop, resulting in a musical orgasm of sorts complete with squinted eyes and an excessive amount of head nods. The lyrics of the song are also quite captivating and the way her voice sounds on the chorus laced with background vocals sounds amazing.
“So I will rescue him, I will rescue him, each time he knocks I’ll let him in. When he wants it time and time again, time again. I’ll give my forgivin’ seventy times seven. So I will rescue him, I will rescue him, no matter what the cost is. When he wants time and time again, time again. I’ll give my forgivin’ seventy times seven. 1,2,3,4,5 I’m on your side, my patients won’t tire with you. 5,6,7 baby up to eleven, I’ll never be tired of you.”
“Everlovin” Ya” featuring Bilal is another highlight because realistically, it is a duet that makes so much sense to me. Personally, I’ve always wanted them to do something together since I heard “Wandering Limbs” on her debut album. The last album highlight comes in the form of “Nobody But You” which was released as a downloadable single around the time of the lead single from the album “90′s Music.” The song just feels so good and makes you want to be so in love with someone that you sing these words ( which I’m not ).
Overall, this album is decent. I think my hopes were a little higher which is why it’s not necessarily something I’m feeling so much. I do think however, perhaps it will grow on me at some point. If you want to check it out for yourself, purchase the album via iTunes here.
Man, I stan out a little for Toro Y Moi and Chaz Bundick, which is why I am extremely excited for Chaz’s new dance music project. The album, Michael, will be out November 4th via Chaz’s label which is a joint venture with Carpark Records. This is the first single from the album, “Bother” and I love it – makes me want to dance really hard.
Source: Line Of Best Fit
Los Angeles based sister trio, Haim, had one of my favorite releases of 2013 with their debut effort Days Are Gone. With the effort, they showed not only are they bad ass musicians with a healthy hair of locks, but that they are versatile. The versatility of the group was shown once again with their latest collaboration. From the album, my favorite song hands down was “My Song 5″ it’s crazy. The lyrics are captivating, and memorable. The guitar, the drum – in love. Earlier this summer, the band released the updated remix version featuring A$AP Mob counterpart A$AP Ferg.
Typically, I hate when people feel they need to put a rapper on a song because more times than not, it doesn’t fit the flow or just seems like a marketing plow. However, this collaboration I enjoy and it doesn’t bother me at all. I won’t say that it made the song better because the song was great by itself, but it definitely added a different energy.
The pairing are finally releasing the video for the track and it’s hilarious. For the video, they created a daytime talk show exposing some weird circumstances and cool cameos like Big Sean and Ke$ha.
Today, one of my favorite singers, New Zealand bred singer Kimbra, released her highly anticipated sophomore album, Golden Echo. It is in my hopes that I am able to finish my album review before I head out of town for AfroPunk because the album is crazy. Not only does Kimbra have a knack for writing great songs – she also does these real interesting and quirky things with her voice shown with her new single “Miracle.” The video which premiered on Refinery29 this morning, is interesting and fun, two things that have become synonymous with Kimbra.
Check out the video and make sure to cop Kimbra’s new album here. Also, make sure to check Kimbra out when she heads out on her tour (which begins on my birthday so you know where I’ll be) check the dates below.
10/20 San Francisco, CA The Independent
10/23 Los Angeles, CA The Roxy
10/24 Santa Ana, CA The Observatory
10/25 Las Vegas, NV Life Is Beautiful Festival
10/27 Salt Lake City, UT In The Venue
10/28 Denver, CO Sherman
10/30 Minneapolis, MN Fine Line Music Café
11/01 Chicago, IL Lincoln Hall
11/06 New York, NY Bowery Ballroom
11/07 Philadelphia, PA World Café Live – Downstairs
11/08 Washington, DC U Street Music Hall
11/09 Allston, MA Brighton Music Hall