Georgia’s pedigree is, from the first notes of her self-titled debut, an intriguing and mesmerizing mash-up of a million different influences, styles, and techniques. An intimately British affair, on its surface Georgia is equal parts Londonese dub and grime, with a post-punk-meets-pop vocal addition.
Cynical listeners will appreciate that Georgia is a strictly solo affair: written, produced, and recorded exclusively by the titular Londoner, it’s rare to see an experimental pop album with such ambition and, at the same time, not filtered through a dozen hands before reaching its audience. The result is something wholly the property of the artist—for better or for worse. Her attention to drums in particular on the twelve tracks that make up her debut is incredible, an ear that has obviously been curated by her time drumming for acts like Kwes, JUCE, and Kate Tempest.
There’s a little bit of The Knife scattered in between verses on tracks like “Move Systems”, “Be Ache” and “Kombine”. The instrumental side of Georgia’s self-titled is both diverse and unique, never borrowing more than a snippet of inspiration from any one avenue (although you can still smell a little bit of Hudson Mohawke around her beats, particularly the dub-heavy “Nothing Solutions”).
In fact, one of the more disappointing aspects here is that Georgia rarely applies her same experimental techniques to her vocal register, instead preferring to keep her lyrics smooth and serene amidst the chaos of her backing instrumentals. When a little bit of tinkering is applied, like the excellent “Move Systems” and its raga-inspired lo-fi verses, the result is phenomenal.
By all accounts, Georgia has exceeded expectations with her self-titled Domino release. Last year’s EP “Come In” was a bold but inconsistent four-track curiosity, both more ferocious and, at times, more poignantly breathtaking. Pop aficionados have been holding their breaths ever since, and Georgia is not only a perfect follow-up but a better realization of her overall sound than her cacophonous EP. Georgia simply sounds better on a long-play, and part of that is a result of just how diverse her sound can be. Within the ten full-length songs on this LP, Georgia does more than just write, record, produce, and release: she spreads her wings and roams around her musical influences with a deftness that is unfamiliar, but no less welcoming, on a debut release.
Review by Fraser Dobbs