Æ: Aglet Eaters

St. Marie Records Rampage: Elika

Posted in Feature by R on May 25, 2012

Elika are so quiet.

Outside of music that is.

I barely hear a peep from them.

Yet somehow they’ve turned out half a dozen records at the regular rate of one a year.

Yet somehow, even in shoegaze circles, they skulk quietly in corners. Not ignored as much as aloof. Appreciated by the similarly silent and elusive.

Even the music isn’t particularly obtrusive. It just sort of clears its throat and starts to speak. It’s got a voice like ‘Ray of Light’ era Madonna’s – a fact that most publicity for the band tries to avoid. Even their set-up isn’t particularly protuberant. What’s there? A laptop? a keybpard? Maybe a guitar? Two people? There aren’t any drums that’s already reduced the physical space they’d take up as a musical entity by 75%.

If only there was some way to be whispering this post. Whatever I say about Elika feels like interference in a private project. I fear they might come across this post and narrow their eyes at the interruption (soz!). I’m going to wrap up and slink out, but I think you need to hear the zen for yourself. Listen to Always The Light. It came out in March this year. It’s determined, but not bullheaded. Concentrated, but not heavy. Come to think of it, the lightness and simplicity of it all makes me wonder if, rather than being cross at me for so impertinently judging them, Elika would just ignore me altogether.

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3 Responses

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  1. Jim said, on January 17, 2013 at 2:44 am

    What a wonderfully apt description! In it, it sort of sounds as if Elika is the “kitteh” of the shoegaze world — they don’t really care so much what YOU think, as they know they are wonderful and are quite content with that fact alone. They are not aggressively arrogant in any way by doing so; they merely know they don’t need to yell out their presence. We will know they are there, and we will love them unconditionally.

    I do love Elika. Their music (perhaps even more so on this release than previous ones) leaves me feeling somber yet fulfilled. It is the ultimate dichotomy. I fear the effect I may experience from listening to the next track. Will it be the one that sways emotion to a place too far, that provokes too much melancholy without the reassurance of warmth? Some tracks are indeed quite melancholy, and the expanse of sadness widens while listening. “Never Touch The Sky” cuts deep, while “A Year Alone” provides the killing blow.

    Most bands would end an album on a “high note,” with a song of optimism. Elika care not whether or not we leave on a happy note. The kitteh has spoken its mind, and now it is off to other endeavors.

    We’ll have the memories, and we can fall back on some of their other songs as needed to walk away with a feeling of balance at the end of it all.

    They know how to tug at the heartstrings, in a quiet and delicate manner. It’s all just one big ball of yarn to them — but their secret is that they know just which strings to pull out of it, to weave a tapestry of emotions that will leave you — somber yet fulfilled.

    • Radhika said, on February 3, 2013 at 5:48 pm

      my god, you’re right! Elika’s a cat!

      • Jim said, on February 5, 2013 at 2:54 am

        🙂


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