Published Aug 08, 2014Much like her penchant for cracking her limbs, FKA twigs' brand of experimental R&B on her debut, LP1, is wholly devoted to staccato snaps and tonal fractures, tempered only by the soft balm of her voice. "Closer" showcases twigs' love for airy chord breaks and jello-y synth lines, while the sultry "Lights On" climaxes in a collision of car alarms and calliopes stolen from a travelling circus.
However, what pushes this album beyond a glorified release of field recordings and agitated tempos is her lack of hesitation to explore the darker sides of lust and infatuation. In the same verse, she can submissively plea for her lover's heart ("You know I'd put you first") before pronouncing physical dominance ("Motherfucker, get your mouth open, you know you're mine"). More so than on her EPs, there's an apparent effort to showcase her insecurities underneath the layers of noise. Thankfully, with the likes of Arca, Clams Casino and twigs herself on production duty, the album feels sonically cohesive, as the ten tracks transition neatly from one to the other.
LP1's only issue is repetition. Songs like "Pendulum" and "Video Girl" host nearly identical snare-snapping sonic elements, while "Two Weeks" and "Give Up" host similar vocal inflections for their respective hooks, but given the sheer scope of ideas and moving parts twigs successfully weaves together here, these are very minor gripes. LP1 is a fantastic debut from an artist who is quickly becoming the curator of her own mental museum. (XL)