FKA twigs – Good to Love | WEEKID TRACKS
FKA twigs is an embodiment of human connection in all its contrasting multitudes. Her artistry is commanding yet submissive, affectionate yet fiercely independent. Her music is in a constant stasis of transformation, a singular framework where every emotional reaction is met with a physical one. Carnal bombast is an important part of how Tahliah Barnett processes the rickety click-clack of her pendulum heart; she internalises her feelings and externalises them instantly.
Last years M3LL155X, Barnett’s third EP and first release since her debut album LP1, was a tightly knit audiovisual marvel about owning yourself, the evolution from being a vehicle for someone else’s imagination to being the creator of oneself. ‘In Time’, the centrepiece of the EP, anchored the project in a power struggle of yearning, as the narrator exchanges insecurities for self-assured nerve in a relationship caught in a state of flux. She morphs in and out of character on the raging chorus to emphasise the frustration over the lack of control, and it is in this cornered spot between loneliness and desire that twigs manage to communicate something intimate. The layers of personal turmoil that run through her music is reflected onto her powerfully choreographed videos of corporeal duality. Barnett is a conceptualist exploring the boundaries of her emotional being, and she uses the metamorphic potential of the body to invoke the conflict in all its glory and gore.
Few modern artists communicate longing as well as FKA twigs does. She is well aware that there is no compass that can help map out human behaviour, and so she lives out her own flawed, irresistible logic of how to get involved in the exchange of emotions. Hers are tales of beauty and brutality where delirium never seems far away. So it is understandable why ‘Good to Love’, her new audiovisual single, will sound like an oversimplification for many listeners. It opens with the sound of twigs’ feet rubbing against bed sheets giving way to a spaced out introduction for Barnett to fill out with her soothing voice. “It’s not your fault that I’m loved to my limit / I’ve had plenty so I know you’re mine,” she sings as she writhes around in bed, thus bridging the gap to an unsteady pulse beneath the sheets. It is the closest twigs has been to traditional balladry, an intimate vowel that leaps out of its black and white framework and into a fully fleshed declamation of having the courage to enjoy intimacy. ‘Good to Love’ is an equally stunning and daring move from an artist and an auteur, for which the personal has always been political. FKA twigs is the only one to decide when to give into the immediacy or the anger of her desire, and right now she is melting the hardcore together with the gentle, in order to bring us big time sensuality. We should not let the frictions of the past hold us back from enjoying the multitudes of her self-acceptance.
‘Good to Love’ is produced by Rick Nowels and FKA twigs – its accompanying video was directed by twigs and Imma. and is available here via Young Turks. The artwork of the single was shot by Alexandra Hogan.