Wednesday, June 18, 2014

"Thousand Eyes"- Lia Ices

Reading Lia Ices' description of her third LP Ices, someone could draw the conclusion that the Hudson Valley artist is a tUnE-yArDs derivative. A solo artist who trades in "Persian percussion, hip-hop beats, lo-fi, hi-fi, Pakistani pop, Link Wray, Jason Pierce, gospel, dub," practically screams Merrill Garbus' band moniker from the highest rooftop. Screaming and shouting though are actions reserved for Garbus, whose most indelible tracks tend to leave her voice ragged. Her vocals aren't a component of the songs, but the main feature.

Ices' vocals meanwhile tend to bleed into the background. On captivating first single "Thousand Eyes" they're indecipherable to a casual listener; buried underneath fragments of sitar, gingerly strummed guitar, clopping drums, and an ocean of reverb. If the futuristic tribalism vibe she's trying to conjure isn't clear from the music, a sharp ear can hear her mention "astronauts" and "fire" with equal amounts of awe. Ultimately that's what "Thousand Eyes" is all about, being able to find the magic in everything from the moss that grows on a stone to the plummeting canyons of Mars. "For the first time, Lia Ices felt like an inclusive project with its own identity, not just a name," Ices writes in the aforementioned press release. With something so warm and inviting, everyone should feel included.

is out on Jagjaguwar on September 16.

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