Ikonika – Contact Love Want Have review
Having kept fans hooked since her first Hyperdub single Please/Simulacrum, Ikonika graduates with flying colours into the the big league with this stunning debut. “Ikonklast (Insert Coin)” starts things off in a measured but confident way, with half-step beats and bent Eastern scales vying for your attention. The rollicking funky meets glitchcore of “Idiot” is a revelation though. A perfectly tempered mix of stacked snares, sub bass and a complex melody picked out of a slew of bleeps and test tones, it’s both satisfyingly familiar whilst also sounding totally unique and fresh.
While her early singles were leapt on by dubstep fans everywhere, Ikonika takes the wise decision not to go down any cliched or well-trodden routes on Contact Love Want Have. There’s no gratuitous wobble for example on tunes like “Millie” or “Sahara Michael”, the basslines are tight and full of bounce rather than showy and over the top. There are also so many influences at work here (all expertly realised through her sharp production) that every listen solicits a different response from the listener. “Continue?” for example gives off a slow-jam R&B vibe with the beats but quickly picks up the pace and transforms into something else entirely. Heston gives off some serious kwaito vibes too, coming over like a sequel to “Township Funk” (Mujava’s classic which Ikonika remixed for Warp last year) and “Psoriasis” will be the one that DJ’s will go crazy for – a seriously banging fusion of funky and swirling melodies. Fans of Zomby, Kode9 and the extended Hyperdub and Planet Mu family will instantly rate this straight away, but there’s every chance it’s unique edge and all round quality will see it reach a wider audience pretty soon.
Review: Oliver Keens