Tuesday, October 8th, 2019

Niki – Indigo

A plateau, but a pretty decent one at that…


Kayla Beardslee: The TikTok meme is based around the first line, “You know I’m your type / Right?” and is kind of a lame excuse to flaunt random personality traits to no one in particular on the internet. Sharing short-form, unstructured thoughts to an unknown online audience: yeah, I’d never be caught dead doing that. This song is actually enjoyable on its own merits: fun, funky, and a showcase for Niki’s agile and compelling voice. “Indigo” follows the “Truth Hurts” mold of striving to be endlessly quotable, and it surprisingly succeeds at throwing out memorable lyrics more often than it fails. “If thrill was a sport / I’d be the poster child” is one of the clear standout lines. The only problem is that some of the words are borderline incomprehensible, especially in the chorus. What’s even more frustrating is that although I can understand the words if I concentrate really hard, it makes the lyrics and music feel at odds with each other, because everything else about “Indigo” encourages the listener to stop thinking and enjoy the undeniable groove.

Kylo Nocom: If you like songs that are straight out of the skweee era, are rather verbose for sex songs (kind of explained by the line on over-thinking, but come on, gumption), and inadvertently creates the desire to start crowdfunding, well…

Alfred Soto: I’ll award passing grades to any tune that praises “gumption.” Fortunately, the rest of “Indigo” shimmies in a confident, post-Aaliyah mode. 

Ian Mathers: I mean, most songs about getting ripped on drugs and fucking don’t manage to get away with both “superimposed” and “adagio” right in the chorus, and between the almost playful forthrightness here (if you’re going to say “you know I’m your type, right?” why not make it the opening line?) and the little vocal somersaults Niki manages in and around the chorus this winds being more of a bop than it might appear at first.

Will Rivitz: Cashmere Cat has been off on his Catsune Miku kick for a bit, so someone else has had to step in for the annual re-engineering of “Be My Baby.” Thankfully, “Indigo” has just enough grit in its bass squelch to stand on its own.

Joshua Minsoo Kim: Musically, it’s unassailable in the way that Korea’s attempts at contemporary R&B often are (think: Hyolyn’s “Dally” or SAAY’s “Overzone“). The chorus’s start-stop rhythm makes it hard to parse the lyrics though, with Niki rivaling Ariana Grande in terms of poor enunciation. In that moment, the words she sings feel detached from the music — more cerebral than corporeal. “Indigo” isn’t unsexy, but it never really fully teases you with its come-ons and the potential meaning of its titular color. Where’s the spunk? Where’s the gumption?

William John: A perky, unobjectionable RnBass track is lifted exponentially by Niki’s unexpected songwriting choices — of particular note are the way she flattens the song in the second verse for a bout of nonchalant shit-talk, and her use of words like “gumption,” “adagio” and “superimposed,” all of which might otherwise indicate overuse of the thesaurus, but here seem instinctive. An exciting new talent.

Reader average: [7.5] (2 votes)

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2 Responses to “Niki – Indigo”

  1. That lack of controversy!

  2. Dressed up in glitzy, arcade sparkles, NIKI flaunts Kehlani’s self-assurance from SweetSexySavage as her own, shifting between the punctuated staccatos of flirts in the verses and the dream-like haze of post-pickup-line allurement in the pre-choruses. It has some of the clunky stumbles of a first encounter too (the delivery of “too feisty to function” feels rushed, jam-packed), but “Indigo” is nonetheless calculated to the t as the hyping soundtrack for a night out.

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