Nick Hakim // Green Twins
Nick Hakim embraces a brand of R&B as bleary as the eyeballs that adorn the album cover.
Unlike other denizens of our nation's capital, D.C.-area singer-songwriter Nick Hakim makes no pretense of draining the swamp on his debut campaign Green Twins. He embraces a brand of R&B as bleary as the eyeballs that adorn the album cover, packing layers onto his throwback sound like warm, rich sediment. Many of these songs inhabit a sort of musical twilight, striking and beautiful, but hinting at encroaching dark. This vibe is especially prominent during the album's second half. "Farmissplease" simultaneously soothes and unsettles with ghostly guitar effects, decaying electric piano chords, and wailing double-tracked vocals. "The Want" and "Those Days" are something like a beachside fever dream, washing over the listener in a haze of lush harmonies, druggy saxophone, and swaying conga rhythms - think Timmy Thomas' "Why Can't We Live Together" updated for 2017. Simple instrumentation introduces musical ideas, which grow progressively denser as the tracks unfold ("Roller Skates," "Busy Bees"). This is smooth soul underneath a psychedelic mud mask, and well worth opening your pores to.
– Matt Swanseger