Lila Iké – The Experience EP
Lila iké – The Experience EP
Label: In.Digg.Nation Collective/Six Course/RCA Records | Format: DR | Street date: May 15, 2020
- Where I’m Coming From
- I Spy
- Stars Align
- Forget Me
- Second Chance
- Thy Will
The news that one of the most sought-after artists to emerge from Jamaica, Lila Iké, had inked a deal with RCA Records (part of Sony Music Entertainment) almost instantly made me remember Jamaican artists who signed with a major record company and in the end saw a huge part of their core fans turn away from them, because – among other things – the company had taken full control over their final sound – often an attempt to achieve crossover success. Would this also be the scenario for Lila Iké? Most likely her first EP for RCA Records, “The Experience”, gives us a glimpse of what can be expected in the future. So, let’s see what we are offered…
The 7-track EP starts off with the already well known hit tune “Where I’m Coming From” – actually her fourth single. It’s an excellent trap-dancehall song produced by Kasadie “Caspa” Jones, in which she reflects on her musical journey thus far. A trio of Jamaica’s most promising young beatmakers, Ziah x JLL x Iotosh, are responsible for the next track, “Solitude”. The latter, which relishes in silence and peace-of-mind in a sea of a wobbling bass and whisks of guitar and violin, is not the only track on this EP that aims at the crossover market. It’s very doubtful whether this effort will strike a chord among the reggae audience. Next comes the also previously released “I Spy,” produced by Izy Beats (the hitmaker behind Koffee’s “Toast”), which is a very appealing and catchy tune with a reggaeton and pop feel.
On the sweet and jazzy “Stars Align”, Lila Iké flips the instrumental from Protoje’s “Bout Noon” into an anthem about falling in love through the metaphor of making music. The theme of the Phillip “Winta” James produced “Forget Me” also deals with affairs of the heart and so does the one of the few real reggae pieces here, “Second Chance”, over Dennis Brown’s “Promised Land” riddim (aka Aswad’s “Love Fire” riddim). And reggae music is also the downright stellar “Thy Will”, which is underpinned by a version of Sly & Robbie’s awesome “Baltimore” riddim.
All in all it looks like the free-spirited versatile Lila Iké is more or less obliged to give her new record company a genre-bending sound of reggae, hip hop and R&B.