The opening, lilting guitars of “Roseate,” the first single from Greek-American singer Ioanna Gika’s upcoming debut solo LP of the same name, may make you wonder why she’s on tour with beloved indie metal group Deafheaven. “Goodbye / In waves the message rang through the sea,” Gika sings in a half-coo, half-lament. “The pelicans froze in the air, they saw what was no longer there.” It’s borderline folky, though hardly a harbinger of what’s to come.
Like the music of her tourmates, the song builds in emotional intensity, albeit with programmed drums and dark synths that sound like My Brightest Diamond writing a Suicide song. As “Roseate” crescendos into a chugging, panic-inducing sonic 180 from its opening chords, the tension Gika creates isn’t just palpable; it makes you want a cigarette and someone to hug. It’s the musical equivalent of the initial descent of a roller coaster; that paradoxical rush of ecstasy and dread where you want to get off and fly down the track at the same time.
Gika, best known as one-half of Los Angeles indie-rock duo Io Echo, begins her tour with DIIV and Deafheaven October 19th at Pappy and Harriet’s in Pioneertown, CA through a Halloween date at Jersey City, NJ’s White Eagle Hall.
Ioanna Gika’s debut album is out early next year on Sargent House.