A darker Iamamiwhoami.
Smashing together elements of electronica, trip-hop and ethereal pixie dust, Iameve feels like she’s been working towards “Archetype” for some time. Somehow she manages to skewer being darkly dramatic, catchy and quirky at the same time. It means as an album, this will appeal to those who love the esoteric side of female singer-songwriters but can also be a great entry to deep thought trip-hop too.
This all translates into groove-driven tracks that cross over between a darker Ionnalee/Iamamiwhoami with high register vocals in a similar style to Kate Bush. That’s where the similarities to Bush end though, this is a synth-laden collection of songs with a smearing of guitars over them. “Raindrops” is a standout single with a deep grimey tape chewed bassline that twists and turns uneasily whilst Iameve chirps and calls out like an otherworldly siren. “If I Were Queen” also holds a powerful foreboding to its set-up – something that flows throughout the album. It is often down to the dusty and seedy whir of the drums or synths that pair up with a crawling rising or fall of the chords. It gives a slow drip of dread in most of the songs. Add in some guitar fuzz and you have something that could score the end credits of a dystopian sci-fi movie.
Elsewhere “Red and Black” is a percussive lo-fi hit with quirky vocals and a film-noir undertone. Think Curve or Garbage doing their electronica focused ballads and you are around the same region. Fans of Oh Land will also find themselves at home here too from a quirky pop perspective. This is what I mean though. Iameve manages to skewer the odd and the mainstream and glide between them effortlessly. It might be a weird bassline or a kooky vocal riff, she’s going to get into your brain somehow. “X Girl” is the closing track and it veers Iameve towards synthwave without arriving. Instead, its a chaotic club piece that wants to be a cinematic battle piece with a guitar solo too. That sounds like it could be a mess but the production and mood wrap it up into a neat bundle. You can dance, draw a sword, rock out and go underground to meet Neo all under five minutes.
Celestial devil. That’s how I’d describe the mood and embodiment of Iameve. The juxtaposition of angelic and strong vocals alongside gritty and grungy electronica makes for superb listening. Most of the tracks could be on the dance floor or in a goth bar and feel out of place in neither. It’s been on regular rotation all weekend since I picked it up last week. Full of earworms and plenty of sound layers to uncover, don’t sleep on this if you like your muses shadowy.
Recommended track: If I Were Queen
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