Arca — KiCk i: Review

Kevin Montes
2 min readJul 2, 2020

Like the evolution in herself, the music speaks similarly in Arca’s KiCk i. The transcendent artist/producer had tremendous outputs in the previous decade, with two albums and headlining the production on one of BJÖRK’s best albums. But unlike all that, KiCk i becomes a one of a kind record filled with so many sounds it’s like bullets flying with double speed right at you.

Mutant and Arca uses a lot of noise and industrial trance to create an atmosphere. But this new album’s approach feels more kin to a fleshed out album with purpose. There is never a dull moment that rides the waves too long. Each song is packed with these sharp turning sounds that evoke more than the initial layers perceive.

Filled with dangerously unique combinations, Arca keeps composure. Familiar faces accompany her as well. The likes of BJÖRK, Rosalia, and SOPHIE, to name a few, bring a lot to the table, while Arca orchestrates. Like on “KLK,” that uses Rosalia’s strengths and intertwines it with the noise of Arca’s instrumentals.

Though when they aren’t creating melodies and harmonies, there are other moments Arca creates these industrial — high sonic frequency, tracks like “Rip The Slit.”

She explores the realm of Hip-Hop too with an oblique industrial instrumental filled with pauses to evoke the lyrics on the track “Nonbinary.” It’s multi-faceted layers of lyricism and instrumental take new form when Arca delivers that fierce third verse. She comes in with such veracity that the sweat starts pouring down from all that fire delivered.

It comes with the same feeling one gets from listening to KiCk i’s barrage of bullets, a pause is always needed. Sometimes it can get tiring if listening from start to finish, but individualized the tracks speak light years for the transcending sounds.

Arca’s use of softened melodies brings life to the forefront, like operatic echoes of “Afterwords” or “Calor.” Creating atmosphere has always been a consistent strength of Arca and her ingenuity to weave such creations is what keeps the amazement.

It may be as powerful and expansive as her previous two albums, but KiCk i keeps the ball rolling with virtuoso.