Emika - Pretend / Professional Loving [12'']
One of the most hotly-tipped female artists around right now, Emika returns with the last warm up single for her forthcoming, self-titled debut album. A double-A of obsession and alienation, of getting lost in the music and struggling to find your way back, the Anglo-Czech artist based in Berlin shows once again that there can be more to being a singer-songwriter than an acoustic guitar and a winsome smile.
First track ''Pretend'' is, in Emika's own words, ''about all sides of fakeness, disbelief, dancing on the head of a pin. It begins with a synth I made to feel like a heartbeat, and ends with psychotic hi-hats playing a melody which will come get you while you sleep.'' Really, it's hard to describe it better than that. ''Professional Loving'', on the other hand, is about the way in which the music industry uses ''friendship'' as a form of control, the fragile vocal delivered over a powerful surge of bass and oscillating keys.
Remixes come from all quarters. Berlin experimentalists Brandt Brauer Frick turn in a stripped back 8 minute mix, operating on the borders between classical music and techno. Kyle Hall's techno is, of course, born from the wellspring of Detroit and his take on ''Pretend'' reflects this. DJ Rashad's more frenetic interpretation, on the other hand, brings us closer to a Chicago take on witch-house.
In an age of identikit pop starlets Emika has always stood out from the pack. A hugely talented producer who uses her voice and her own obsessions to craft something unique, her combination of frailty and power has had her tipped by everyone from Resident Advisor to The Guardian.