There’s good reason FKA twigs easily commands a captive audience. The young British singer, songwriter and dancer has been consistently breaking new ground in electro-pop, dance and trip-hop genres, winning accolades along the way.
Her eye-popping music videos are often overtly sexual without revealing anything, and demonstrate her mature grasp of performance art, skirting the hazy line that separates NSFW and slick production.
Her latest five-song EP, “M3LL155X,” also called “Melissa,” moves fluidly between trip-hop, soul, house and R&B influences. The songs gracefully house her hushed and porcelain vocals, which can drop to almost nothing in one measure and soar wildly in the next.
The scratchy, drawn-out groan she emits in the electric “Figure 8” is only one testament to how far she’s willing to go in music. On the explosive “I’m Your Doll,” she portrays a blow-up doll ready to do her bidding. “I’m feeling like a loaded gun, and when it’s done, I’m the only one,” she whispers.
For the synth-pop dance song “In Time,” she implores a man to stay committed, promising that together they’ll be unstoppable. But she also softly warns him, “The way you dismiss me/Will turn into missing me like I am yours.” On the tempo-jumping single “Glass & Patron,” she experiences a catharsis that frees her from the deep-seated pain of “being told who I am.” It’s her version of “Vogue” for the 21st century.
Her accompanying 16-minute conceptual video for the EP sways wildly between vivid imagery and unsettling beauty – it screams to be seen. It’s safe to say few others in music are taking the kinds of risks that FKA twigs is fast becoming known for.