Skip to main content

Single Review: Nikaa - ‘Joy’

by Molly Wroe

Future East London soul superstar Nikaa is setting the mood with her gorgeous new single ‘Joy’ - a dreamy, sun-soaked ode to love with a buttery voice and very sweet acoustic instrumentals.


The track starts with an almost twinkly guitar riff, reminiscent of the bedroom pop genre that we’ve seen skyrocketing to popularity in recent years, with some gentle vocal ad libs over the top. It’s casual, it’s slow and it feels like a lazy Sunday morning, drinking coffee in a warm conservatory; if you could hear the feeling you get from a sun spot in the kitchen window warming your face, that would be the opening to ‘Joy’.


By the chorus, the instrumental has picked up a minimal amount of drums just to keep that drowsy, romantic tempo, which allows Nikaa’s vocals and lyrics to shine throughout the song. She credits Amy Winehouse and Etta James as two of her musical inspirations, and her lower range echoes that, whilst her higher notes give me goosebumps and an affectionate feeling in my chest. 



Lyrically, the song tells the story of being reluctant to fall for someone because you’re looking for love and not to be messed around, with the key line being in the pre-chorus, “boy what you saying, ‘cause man I ain’t messin’ around.” I particularly like the lyrics to this as a love song because I find them to be relatable - no grand gestures, no huge promises, just walking “hand-in-hand by the shore” and staying in the house together. 


The chorus is in line with the overall tone of the song; it’s smooth and easy to remember, almost symbolising that the kind of relationship Nikaa sings about is easy-going. She’s asking for the bare minimum too: “Bring me joy, bring me life, bring me sunsets not goodbyes.”


This is a gloriously unmaterialistic song, not focused on cars or diamonds or bodies like a lot of new music - this is romantic, easy, and very comforting for the soul. I also enjoy that we are left with quite a lot of instrumental at the end of the song, almost to stew on what Nikaa has just given us, and it fades out effortlessly.


I hope to hear more from Nikaa and will be going to listen to her first two singles immediately after this - I find her lyrics and musical style on this song to be so calming and refreshing and I cannot wait to see where it takes her!

Comments

Most Popular

Single Review: ‘Tell Me’ - Jay Moussa-Mann

by Ilana Hawdon The feeling of pure betrayal and heartbreak is perfectly captured in Jay Moussa-Mann’s latest single, ‘Tell Me’. Jay Moussa-Mann is the folk dream we have been waiting for. A favourite on BBC Introducing, Radio 6 and BBC Radio Tees, Jay ’s sound is easy on the ears but delightfully addictive. With a background in writing and film, she began her solo musical venture when she released her debut album, ‘Little Deaths’ in late-2019, and since then, Moussa-Mann has defined herself as an artist with unbelievable range and promise.    ‘Tell Me’ is completely timeless; with notes of Carole King and Joni Mitchell, Moussa-Mann creates a folk-inspired track which is simultaneously heart wrenching and strangely empowering. Beginning as a simple guitar tune, ‘Tell Me’ builds with layers of luscious strings and twinkling piano, tied together with Jay ’s vocal line which is equal parts melancholic and divine. The song feels unwaveringly intimate; the lyrics ask, ‘what was I worth?’

‘Make Tattooing Safe Again’: Sheffield Based Tattoo Artist Exposed for Indecent Behaviour

 by Emily Fletcher TW: SA, Animal Abuse, Transphobia Photo Credit: @ meiko_akiz uki Recently, an  Instagram account  has been created to provide a  ‘space to safely give a voice to those who want to speak out about the behaviour of one, Sheffield based tattoo artist’. A  total of 40+ posts have been made by the above social media account regarding  one of Sheffield's most popular tattoo artists .  Thankfully, all posts are prefaced with a Content Warning prior to sharing screenshots of the messages that have been sent anonymously to the page. The majority of Content Warnings refer to sexual behaviour, abuse, and sexual assault. It is clear that there is a reoccurring theme within each submission, as many clients appear to have had the same experiences with the tattoo artist. Women, mostly, are being made to feel uncomfortable while being tattooed. One of the most vulnerable positions anyone can be in, tattoo artists should make their clients feel comfortable and safe during the pro

Single Review: 'So Deep' - Brianna Knight

 by Emily Jackson New York-based singer-songwriter Brianna Knight’s latest track, 'So Deep', is a declaration of love without any soppiness; it’s pure soul. With a voice like honey that oozes power and control at the mastery level of some of her biggest influences (Lauryn Hill and H.E.R.), Brianna’s vocals soar.  ‘So Deep’ is an intoxicating listen and in just under three minutes, Knight sells you a whole story about fun, lust-filled young love. The heavy funk bass line evokes nostalgia, making you want to get up and dance, whilst keeping things contemporary by being an upbeat tale of passion rather than your bog-standard ballad. Brianna’s sound blends 90’s R’n’B with a modern take on Soul; hearing just the first few notes is enough to wish that she could narrate your wildest nights and worst heartaches.   As Brianna sings “you’re addictive to me” - you stop and realise that you may just be addicted to her. Just before you think the single couldn’t get better, the first verse c