Any artist who situates the obligatory album “intro” track as the second, rather than first song is sure to get some attention, and London’s Raisa Khan is no exception here. This Red Bull Music Academy alumnus drops her debut solo EP, FEEDER, last friday. The EP gives us Raisa’s inventive blend of dark, lo-fi infused electronica moulding an obsidian dream of sorts, but most notably, FEEDER features this young artist and member of both Micachu and The Shapes establishing the foundations of her own unique sound, which is sure to be on full blast at an Urban Outfitters near you.
But before listening to this tight, seven track recording you should be warned: don’t listen to it in the dark, don’t listen to this after a break up, and definitely don’t listen to this when you’re terribly hung over. A bit of a weird foreword I suppose? Well its one I wish I had. Don’t get me wrong, generally the EP is an enjoyable exhibition of Raisa’s clearly empirical musical style. But beneath Kahn’s subdued, sultry, enchantress vocals rest skilfully layered, down tempo sounds that craftily transmit a shadowy ambience. Thought it was impossible to make out with someone at a funeral? FEEDER is music that will make you beg to differ.
Simply put, it is an incredibly sombre collection of tracks that will either make you recall the angst of a painful relationship, or go on a crazy substance-fuelled bender, waking up butt naked in a playground. It happens to the best of us, I swear.
It seems only fitting that ‘Repetition’ is the first track, as its decidedly simple cords and, repetitive lyrics come as an oddly visceral, audible foray into the unique blends of experimental, industrial and punk rock sounds that Kahn makes her own. Followed by ‘Intro’, it’s as if Raisa’s sound emulates the perverse organ music you’d hear while walking into a grotesque carnival. Still, the recognition that FEEDER will bring Raisa will be much different than anything that Micachu and The Shapes have accomplished so far.
That’s because with even this short demonstration of Raisa’s solo talent, the tracks direct us through a narrow a hedge maze of sordid and sad truths. ‘Bowl With A Hole‘ exemplifies this, with its drum and chime propelled beat sounding like something that avant-garde masterminds Xiu Xiu could have had their hands in. Still, it’s Raisa’s Santigold-esque vocals which echo loudest on this entrancing track. As Raisa playfully chants “a bowl with a black hole” throughout the track, what started off as a cute percussion piece turns into a sinister sounding anthem wrought with emptiness a delusion.
FEEDER hears Raisa resurrecting the spirit of Jimi Hendrix and mashing one of his heavy, lo-fi guitar lines with her blooming electronic wizardry on the keyboard. Ending off with the bleak, no vocal track ‘Seasick Sailors’, Raisa reveals her musical genius to be a slow creeping, but eventually poignant punch, not to be underestimated.
Buy the FEEDER EP on iTunes