Written by Maya-Rose Torrão
Multi-talented British artist GAIKA has just dropped his debut full-length album ‘BASIC VOLUME’ via Flying Lotus label Warp Records, who have described the artist’s sound as “gothic dancehall and industrial electronics“, which is an excellent description, seeing as though this is a genre-defying artist who takes influence from a variety of different sources and produces an array of eclectic sound. GAIKA calls his music “ghetto futurism”, a dark and flawless mash-up of dancehall, R&B, grunge, hip-hop and industrial genres, and has been making waves as the hot new voice on London’s music scene with the release of his three EPs ‘MACHINE’, ‘SECURITY’ and ‘SPAGHETTO’. Now GAIKA is back with his first full-length and we couldn’t be happier.
Stream GAIKA’s new album here while reading more about this eclectic musician’s latest release.
Much like his other work, GAIKA’s new album is a rich tapestry of personal and political storytelling, dealing heavily with themes of belonging, especially as a black man in the UK. GAIKA explains, “I’m black, and Britain is not a black country, so you only feel as much at home, and as welcome as you’re made,” and how, “At times I certainly didn’t feel welcome, and I certainly didn’t feel a hundred percent British or identify as British. I think that’s how a lot of immigrants feel..and [I] guess it creates a sense of disquiet, which was one of the feelings I was writing about.”
Although GAIKA deals with a lot of similar sounds and moods that he touched on in his EP releases, the Brixton-born musician notes a shift in tone and sound on his new album. GAIKA reflects, “I wanted to make something which was deliberately polished,” and not purely experimental, which points to why ‘BASIC VOLUME’ features a lot more traditional production technique, while still staying true to GAIKA’s unique sound.
GAIKA is not only making waves on the music scene, but has been a part of the underground art and fashion world for many years now, his fashion aesthetic centred around his fascination with gothic and industrial themes. In addition to new music, GAIKA will also be unveiling an art installation project he has been working on in conjunction with Boiler Room at Somerset House today; titled ‘SYSTEM’, the project will be a sculptural and video installation that will celebrate sound systems as well as London’s annual Notting Hill Carnival as technical heritages of black culture.
Step into the visual world of GAIKA with his freshest video release from last month for his single ‘Crown & Key’: