Boomkat Product Review:
Classically trained British producer Dear Laika follows a slew of self-released albums and EPs with this ambitious debut for NNA Tapes. A fusion of operatic vocals, fractured electronics and technically gifted instrumental virtuosity, it's unique stuff that conjures images of frozen and druidic times. Think Kate Bush or Tori Amos with an Icelandic choir and Ben Frost on electronics...
'Pluperfect Mind' reaches for the heavens and when it works, fully shows off the massive musical talents of Dear Laika. Her ability to conquer complicated vocal arrangements, textured passages of experimental electronics and epic instrumental sections with similar skill is quite breathtaking. 'Guinefort's Grave' is poppy and brave, shifting thru Joanna Newsom-esque folk changes but with a snowy Celtic richness that's backed up with assured piano, emotive strings and crunchy, overdriven percussion.
Lead single 'Phlebotomy' meanwhile is more ghostly, sounding like sacred music being piped thru a low bandwidth YouTube connection before Dear Laika's soaring voice takes us to the heavens. The title track might be the album's most successful fusion, as mossy Enya-esque new age synths breathe life through looping vocals before being swallowed into dark ambience.