It’s been eleven years since the release of Anika’s debut solo record Anika. The debut caught the attention of many for its sleezy dub covers and dark grooves. Two moves to Berlin and Mexico City found Anika as the leader of a new group called Exploded View who went on to release two records. Despite the low output of records just about everything she has touched in the past decade has gone on to become an underground classic. Needless to say, Change is a record that comes with high anticipation.
Change is the first of Anika’s releases to feature an entirely original set of songs. Her past covers of Yoko Ono and Bob Dylan were enjoyable in their creativity, but the decision comes as an important creative leap. Because of this, one of the more noticeable differences between this record and the self-titled is her powerful lyricism. On the track “Critical” we hear one of the most potent lines on the record, “I always give my man the last word / I always give him what he deserves / But don’t forget that little twist of cyanide in his little gift.”
Musically much of the lo-fi dub sound of the self-titled is still present. That being said there are some evolutions to that sound. “Wait For Something” forgoes the dreamy instrumentation and instead opts for a simpler guitar and drums sound that acts as a stark finale. “Rights” is a powerful call to action that sounds closer to something off a Suicide record.
It’s been a long wait for this record, and it unsurprisingly holds up, if not improves upon a sound that has received cult status in the underground. Anika takes some risks on this LP that push her sound into a new territory. It’s truly exciting to see and a hell of a lot more fun to listen to. On the title track “Change”, Anika says “People don’t change, that’s what they say / But I think we have it all inside / I think we can change, I think we can change”. I think that’s a fitting sentiment of growth for an artist that has had over a decade between releases.
Change is out on Sacred Bones Records.