Search The Line of Best Fit
Search The Line of Best Fit

Biig Piig's Bubblegum mixtape sweetly tears you apart

"Bubblegum"

Release date: 20 January 2023
7/10
Biig Piig Bubblegum Artwork
19 January 2023, 10:00 Written by Simon Heavisides
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If you’ve ever moved to a new city on your own, you may well have experienced feelings of loneliness and confusion.

Now imagine that city is Los Angeles and magnify those feelings accordingly. All in all Biig Piig’s 2020 sojourn to the City of Angels must have been pretty overwhelming, but on the upside, it did help inspire Bubblegum and its seductively skeletal mix of skittery bedroom pop and R&B.

Yes, Biig Piig gives us twilight melancholy with a soothing warmth, but there’s so much more experience and emotion here. As an artist she clearly knows the value of subtlety and restraint, ‘that’ voice is mellifluous in the extreme and perfectly suits the hushed honesty within these seven songs.

Those low-key whispers nevertheless contain multitudes, digging deep into the personal while remaining relatable and avoiding the drift into self-obsession.

Bubblegum perhaps reaches its apotheosis with the sparse beauty of “Ghostin” – an evocation of the desire to disappear with a smooth shift from English to Spanish lyrics. Put it on a loop and drift away.

When “Picking Up” (with guest Deb Never) lets loose in a blizzard of DnB beats, it delivers a welcome release and allows an escape into dance floor bliss however fleeting.

All too soon spectral closer “In the Dark” swoons and sways with The xx style guitar strums and glistening synths, floating through the night on a wave of bittersweet euphoria that tantalisingly threatens to slip into sadness but instead finds reassurance in the enveloping darkness. Key lyric? “And the music will just tear me apart”.

Once again L.A. looms large, not by name but via the shiver of loneliness you can feel in the midst of a sun bleached urban sprawl where everything is happening, just somewhere else, and you feel you’re unmoored and drifting through the world.

A gorgeous ending to what’s described as a mixtape but actually feels like an old school ‘mini album’. It’s more than a taster but leaves plenty of room for development in the future, maybe experimenting with different instrumentation and letting the songs stretch out and breathe beyond their sub three minute durations. Until then, let Bubblegum ever so sweetly tear you apart.

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