When I listened to Necima I was reminded of how humans have always wanted to be birds, to spiral up into the clouds and dash across the landscape without touching the ground. A bird’s voice is the most true instrument of music. They can send shivers down our spines without effort because they are natural singers. Listening to Lia Ices sing on her debut album, I was reminded of a bird.
I found that the best way to listen to this album is to lay back with my discman in my hands, plug in the headphones, and close my eyes. I heard a multitude of tremulous instruments I can’t begin to identify. (Was that a hand held drum, a violin, and a piano?) I went online later to find out more about the music and found that Ices also uses a gemshorn, electric guitar, organs, and bass clarinet. Her words are caught here and there, but mostly I couldn’t figure out what she was saying. This made sense after reading that, while attending NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts for Experimental Theatre, Ices was encouraged to kick back and experiment, to let go of her classical training and use her voice “as a vehicle for emotion and a source of expression.” Now Ices says she is “interested in making music that is emotionally driven and experimental.” Necima is a lovely feast of sound.