After performing under the moniker Throwing Shade, Nabihah Iqbal has embraced her given name for the release of her debut LP, Weighing of the Heart. With the name change also comes a stylistic shift; here, Iqbal moves away from the glittery dance-pop she first experimented with in to a more instrument-based approach, with prominent guitar and keys mingling with the gossamer haze of the album.
While it's an interesting new direction for Iqbal, Weighing of the Heart often feels like two albums competing, vacillating between a new wave feel with a simple yet slightly off-kilter focus and the more alt-pop synth jams that inexplicably punch through midway. While the instrumental elements are certainly a change from her previous work, the simplistic, repetitive guitar chords and pulses of '80s synth are hardly novel, or even worthwhile in many instances across the album. In fact, the only track that makes true impact is opener "Eden Piece," which layers percussive clips and snaps and the twang of a guitar over a simple piano scale.
Weighing of the Heart plays out as the soundtrack to a forgotten '90s B movie; novel, but not great. (Ninja Tune)