Πέμπτη, 11 Σεπτεμβρίου 2014

FKA twigs - LP1

When I first saw the cover of this album, I thought the girl in it has some kind of issues with the "Avatar" film. Anyhow, it's not important. It's just the fact, though, that, while I was listening to her music for the first time, I thought FKA twigs is a weird girl. An almost mythical creature, a person that impersonates many roles through her videos and tries to be anything but normal. It was this exact point of view that I thought it could fade away, as I was trying to understand her musical goals. Maybe I have never been more wrong in my life as far as an artist is concerned. Because, in fact, in every word she sings, her uniqueness gets more and more confident and stronger. That much, that it's getting actually weirdly weird.

The first full-length album for FKA twigs is actually an electronic r'n'b masterpiece. It's like placing Beyonce in the studio with Weeknd, James Blake and Jessie Ware and yet, it's not enough to fully create a picture of her sound. She is fragile and strong at the same time and she is singing from a place that is certainly not her throat or her diaphragm. She sings from her heart and it's not a human heart; it's a divine heart, a heart full of power, sensuality, deep breaths and reverb. You can listen to it so clearly; her voice is recorded from another time and another place, not a studio in the UK.

Even though it was pretty smart to promote the album with the best track in it, "Two weeks", you cannot underestimate the other songs. "Video girl" and "Lights on" are tracks that Kelis, Solange or any other sophisticated r'n'b diva that respects herself could kill for. The production here is flawless. It is "britishly flawless", as I often write about a James Blake record. It's fresh, it stands on its own and most of the times it's dark. Just like a personal secret you really cannot tell to anyone, because someone will die!

FKA twigs, a former dancer in Jessie J videos (what the odds), has released an album that has so much potential in it, it is on the verge of already becoming an instant classic; great songs, great voice, great production, great artwork, great timing and critical reception. Not to mention, a beautiful and stylish woman.

AnArtCalled... 9,5/10

Δευτέρα, 8 Σεπτεμβρίου 2014

Lara Eidi Band - "Tell it like it is " EP

When I first checked Lara Eidi a few months ago, I fell in love with her cover on Nina Simone's "Be my husband". Her soft, jazzy, yet powerhouse vocals were the reason I decided to listen to her music and the covers she had made with her guest musicians and friends. I've been waiting for this EP since then and, actually, I think that this is only a small taste of what's to come out in the near future.

Although I strongly believed that these three tracks would have a folk/blues touch, as some other songs and covers she has recorded in the past, I realised that the bluesy guitars and some urban rhythm sections have given their part to piano-based melodies, strings and acoustic guitar chords. That's a nice and tasty turn as far as the production is concerned, while the songwriting remains strong and confident.

As I play the songs on repeat, it's obvious that Lara (the songwriter, not the singer) gets more and more experienced and the chorus parts of the songs are tight. From one to three, it's also obvious that when Lara (the vocalist, not the songwriter) lets herself improvise on the vocal parts, she sounds more secure than ever ("Tiny people").

"Tell it like it is" is a promising sample of the band's music and style, even though the big asset here, her voice, is not fully showcasing its power. Maybe it's because of the songs' more adult/acoustic pop and less jazz /blues orientation, which is a risk to be taken, of course, when it comes to music creation. I like that and I respect that; artistically, you need to support the songs. But when you have a strong band and a strong musical instrument in it -like this voice is-, you have to let it play the high notes like there's no tomorrow. Cause in these moments, when she hits those high notes, that's where the magic happens!

AnArtCalled... 7/10

Links:
www.facebook.com/TheLaraCollective 
www.soundcloud.com/laraeidi 
www.reverbnation.com/laraeidi
http://open.spotify.com/album/6qyxDIsjmvvCsmfusTWhF4

Lara Eidi Band - "Tell it like it is " EP:
1. Forever Young
2. Tiny People
3. Lose my Mind

Credits:
All music and lyrics by Lara Eidi 
Mixed and Mastered by Giotis Paraskevaidis and Michalis Skarakis @On a Jam Studios 
Final Mastering Iraklis Vlachakis
Arranged and Orchestrated by Lara Eidi, Giotis Paraskevaidis 
Piano, Voice, Vocals, Acoustic Guitar: Lara Eidi 
Guitars, Beatbox Loops: Giotis Paraskevaidis 
Cello, Loops: Stavros Parginos 

Αντί απολογισμού…

Η αλήθεια είναι πως ασχοληθήκαμε με την μουσική έως και αποκλειστικά την χρονιά που πέρασε. Το πιθανότερο είναι να κάνουμε το ίδιο και την επόμενη με την περισσή πάντα, ασυνέπεια που μας διακρίνει. Δηλαδή όποτε μας κάτσει κάτι υπέροχο η απαίσιο –την ίδια ένταση συναισθημάτων προκαλούν άλλωστε. Έχουμε αφήσει ολίγον στην άκρη τα υπόλοιπα. Αν δεις την αρχή του μπλογκ, αφορούσε και φιλμς και εκθέσεις και φεστιβάλ. Αλλά ακόμα και ένα απλό μπλογκ θέλει την αφοσίωση και τον χρόνο του…την φροντίδα του εν τέλει.

Εύχομαι απλά αυτό τον χρόνο να είναι όλα πιο ήρεμα και εμείς να κάνουμε αυτό που αγαπάμε συχνότερα και εντιμότερα.

attention...

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