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Album of the week: Emika 'DREI'

The prolific young producer takes us on a dark and brooding conceptual journey.

Artist: Emika
Album: DREI
Label: Emika Records
Release date: 04/05/15

Emika welcomes us into her dark and brooding world with the release of her fourth album, the sequel to her self-titled LP, Emika. DREI is the the second release on her brand new imprint Emika records, after Klavirni, an album that strayed from her usual bass sounds and featured Emika with a much more minimalist and classic repertoire by using the piano as her instrument of choice.

Emika is not one to sit still, she is an artist in the true sense of the word as she writes, produces, mixes and does all the vocals for her own material, as well as being a talented live performer who curates her own visual material. Emika has created her very own intimate world, luring us in with her soft bass beats and whispers of her sensual vocals building up with a backdrop of dark futuristic sounds that emphasise the mystery in her music, creating that intrigue for the unattainable which surrounds her as an artist.

DREI epitomises her past three efforts and captures that truly Emika signature sound, a dualism between limitations and freedom, illustrated by her opening lyrics in her track Battles: “Battles… each one I win… still losing the war. Hunger…I love hunger…all this emptiness... I want more”. In her own words Emika explains that “DREI is ultimately about freedom. Coping with freedom. Limitations vs Freedom. The shock of a miracle. The madness of being alone. Ambitions and insecurities. The perils of a limitless creative mind. And without a doubt, my desire to produce fat hard beats without needing anyone – complete with a fresh sound.”

This is a clear line that runs through the rest of her LP, in which her Berlin influence becomes apparent with her clever mix of dark dub pop and electro/tech as well as a subtle refinement brought to us by her classical music upbringing – a hint of her third album Klavirni. This is clear in her track Miracles in which she pitches down her voice and has a haunting duet with herself that then fades into the electro-clash inspired My Heart Beats Melody.

In the latter part of the LP we see a nudge towards seductive R&B pop with tracks such as What's The Cure, Without Expression and Serious Trouble, only to finish with Destiny Killer, a dubbed out soundscape with eerie piano chords, a track that keeps us wanting more.

WORDS | Maya Dupont


Tracklist:

01. Battles
02. My Heart Bleeds Melody
03. Miracles Prelude
04. Miracles
05. What's The Cure
06. Without Expression
07. Rache (Revenge)
08. Serious Trouble
09. Destiny Killer


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