THE debut album by FKA Twigs is much hyped. Until recently, 26-year-old dancer Tahliah Barnett’s primary brush with fame was from appearing in Jessie J videos, but the release of two EPs and the cultivation of a very distinctive look, has seen her establish a reputation as a front runner in contemporary R&B.
With a signature sound combining a synth swelling over a heavy beat, to then find that the first track opens with choral singing is unexpected.
Whereas the choral singing is short lived, Bjork-like vocal surprises continue through LP1.
But for all the vocals being chopped up and manipulated, Barnett’s voice is notably delicate. Its sometimes haunting fragility is echoed in the insecurity of Lights On and the rejected lover of Numbers. To its detriment, it could be argued the heavily produced LP1 is lacking in substance.
It will definitely take more than one listen. But on the other hand, this futuristic offering seems to be a unique realisation of one person’s vision.