Emika
Drei


4.0
excellent

Review

by danielito19 USER (28 Reviews)
May 5th, 2015 | 39 replies


Release Date: 2015 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Chilled production, beautifully subdued vocals - a true must Czech album

After leaving Ninja Tune, dubstep/alt. r&b/downtempo songstress Emika launched her own record label, Emika Records. She's been quite busy with composition since starting her label - Drei is Emika's second release of 2015, the first being Klavirni, a solo piano LP. Drei is fairly short, clocking in at 34 minutes. In comparison to earlier efforts like her self-titled debut, Drei sacrifices the dark atmosphere for more overt, melodic songwriting. While Emika could have functioned as the soundtrack to a psychological thriller, her newest work has more of a synthpoppy feel.

Emika's voice glides over her instrumentals just as deftly as on previous work, with effortless tone and excellent vocal control. She doesn't opt for flashy vocal acrobatics like most of the alternative alt r&b crowd, instead opting for subtle moaning and pulling back to near-whispers. Most of her melodies are simple, yet quite infectious - as in "My Heart Bleeds Melody" for example. Her alto is often drenched in delay, lending her some fullness. When she moves into a higher range, such as in "Without Expression," she tends to adopt a wispier technique, but still maintains vocal integrity. This track owes an incredible debt to alternative r&b in the vein of Banks or James Blake. Emika tends to layer vocal tracks fairly rarely, but when this is done the separate vocal lines are mixed beautifully.

From a production standpoint, Drei is immaculate and immediate. While Emika leans on dubstep tenets such as wobble bass, it's utilized sparingly, such as the relentless bassline on aforementioned "My Heart Bleeds Melody," or the convoluted yet melodic wobbles that appear sporadically in "What's the Cure." Emika tends to avoid being pigeonholed into any one genre by flirting with as many different styles as she can. The bass presence is an obvious nod to dubstep and the UK bass scene, but most of the treble content belies trip-hop leanings. She also excels at sound design, with pumping kicks, poppy snares, lush synths, and perfectly placed samples. Her sound design is perhaps best exemplified on "Miracles," in which icy chords bounce around continually to provide a bleakly layered soundscape.

Emika boasts immense skill as both a producer and a singer, and it's honestly somewhat baffling that she hasn't enjoyed the widespread popularity of most of her contemporaries. Her genre-bending style should appeal to all fans of electronic music, and her chordal structures and classical background should appeal to anyone with an ear for melody. Simply put, this is one of the finest albums of 2015, and you owe it to yourself to hear Drei.




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Comments:Add a Comment 
PotsyTater
May 5th 2015


1560 Comments


" a true must Czech album" derp

BallsToTheWall
May 6th 2015


50005 Comments


Yeah. I need this.

Digging: Make Them Suffer - How to Survive a Funeral

Acanthus
May 6th 2015


9812 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Love everything else she's done, will check this out.



Youtube link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pXJb_Ef8Cbo



Bandcamp: https://emika-official.bandcamp.com/

danielito19
May 6th 2015


12237 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

It's on spotify too.



had to make a shitty pun pots, come on, forgive me :3

Acanthus
May 6th 2015


9812 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

This really lacks a track that just reaches out and grabs you, it might grow on me after more listens though; with headphones it's a lot better already.

YakNips
May 6th 2015


19971 Comments


MUST
CZECH

love it i just might

tempest--
May 6th 2015


20634 Comments


this might be a little too much on the electronic/dubstep/whatever side than on the poppy/r&b side for me

danielito19
May 6th 2015


12237 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

oh this is definitely much more indebted to artful beard-stroking dubstep than pop/r&b, but i personally prefer it that way.

Shiranui
May 6th 2015


645 Comments


Buttholes. I have buttholes. Each one of them says I want more.

danielito19
May 6th 2015


12237 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

yay thanks mods for the feature! was a nice surprise to come back to after my lunch break

VaxXi
May 6th 2015


4418 Comments


I'll make sure to czhec this out later

Relinquished
May 6th 2015


44996 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

good shit dude, I really dug her last album

danielito19
May 6th 2015


12237 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I wasn't a huge fan of Dva, but her debut blew me away.

VaxXi
May 6th 2015


4418 Comments


Im not too fond of the vocals on this, but it's pretty chill

Calc
Contributing Reviewer
May 7th 2015


16613 Comments


" a true must Czech album" derp [2]

Digging: Phoxjaw - Royal Swan

Cygnatti
May 7th 2015


33289 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

is it weird to say that i really hate her name?

VaxXi
May 7th 2015


4418 Comments


maybe

ScuroFantasma
Staff Reviewer
May 7th 2015


11774 Comments


Good review man, pos'd. Even if it wasn't I'd struggle not to pos anyway for that pun.

Yuli
Emeritus
May 7th 2015


10743 Comments


interesting, her album was definitely an interesting one but i didn't vibe with it too much on the whole. this might be exactly what i'd like to hear from Emika

danielito19
May 7th 2015


12237 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

try it out and let me know what you think omaha



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