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For FKA twigs’ latest mini-album, the follow-up to last year’s excellent LP1 and 2013’s EP2, the British experimental R&B artist ditched the austere labelling system and titled the surprise album M3LL155X. Apparently named after her personal female energy, Melissa, the five-song EP fittingly builds on the ideas of femininity and sex first introduced on LP1, but here twigs sounds even more poised and self-assured.
On In Time, her breathy, delicate vocals – layered atop pulsating beats, purring synths and robotic flourishes – transform into the powerful as she barks, “When I’m holding you down / you be picking a fight.” On the Boots-produced I’m Your Doll, she coos with icy reverb, “Love me rough / I’m your doll / Wind me up / I’m your doll, ” which, when backtracked with foreboding distortion, sounds more like a threat than an invitation.
It’s twigs’ most experimental offering yet, and a good sign she won’t be streamlining her sound for something more accessible (and less exciting) on her sophomore full-length.
Top track: In Time