Jan 15 2022

Album Review: FKA twigs – CAPRISONGS (Mixtape)

In just under a decade, fka twigs has garnered significant acclaim for her art, pairing grotesque visuals with glitchy, industrial, avant-garde forrays into the world of progressive 21st-century R&B. For her newest release since 2019’s immersive MAGDALENE, twigs has dropped a mixtape without fanfare and very little promotion beforehand, save for one single released to streaming services a few weeks prior. (That song is “tears in the club,” a duet with The Weeknd that is by far the best track on this new project.)

I’m not really sure what twigs fans will think of CAPRISONGS – it is by far her most accessible collection to date. Perhaps the culture has finally caught up to what she was doing, as nowadays we can hear even weirder and more deconstructed perspectives from the likes of Arca and some far-reaching areas of hyperpop. Those familiar with previous work will appreciate the slight updates on textures twigs is best known for; heavy vocal manipulation and her trademark soft falsetto encompass songs like “lightbeamers” and “minds of men.” But in many moments, twigs goes a different direction – “oh my love” could be mistaken for a low-key deep cut from Doja Cat’s Planet Her, and (as the mixtape’s title would lead us to believe) twigs is currently very inspired by tropical sounds, as is evidenced on “papi bones” and “jealousy.”

At times, I’m not certain these new styles work with twigs’ off-kilter approach to seductive, foreboding atmosphere in her music. Another strange example (but by no means bad) is “pamplemousse,” which is by far the most upbeat song she has ever written. It is clear, from the lyrical topics of self-worth and maturity in relationships, as well as the willingness to try new sounds, twigs is more confident in her approach, and ultimately that is a good thing for future projects. But overall, CAPRISONGS is a transitional moment in her career, as she aims to become a more prominent part of the mainstream conversation.

Score: 7/10