Nick Bitzenis (aka Nikonn) is a London based music producer, songwriter, DJ and owner of UNDO records. To date, he has released four full-length albums, and his latest effort Effrosyni is an intriguing example of his ability to create edgy, cinematic electronic pop. The record’s name derives from the Greek word “effraino” which means “to bring joy”, and through his sharp production skills and collaborations with talented female artists, that’s what Nikonn achieves.
Both ‘Intro’ and ‘Denied’ host blissful fractured female vocals (courtesy of artist Evelyne) that ring out over atmospheric electronics. ‘Never’ is equally as hypnotic with it’s slow trance-like beats and echoic vocals from Foko, whereas ‘Take Me Down’ is more straight-forward and upbeat. ‘Mesmerized’ (feat. Kid Moxie) would be the perfect closing track to an 80s coming of age movie, with it’s gentle vocals and buoyant synth sounds, and ‘How Love Is’ (which features more of Evelyne’s beautiful voice) is another hopeful tune to drive in to the sunset to with your partner in crime.
Nikonn’s experience in writing for cinema, documentaries, and theatrical projects has clearly influenced his style on this album. On ‘Do You Believe’, his use of grand piano and measured synths swell and transform in to a dance-infused, larger than life song designed to question your ability to suspend disbelief. ‘Beyond’ (feat. Frini) is home to soothing, mellow synths and vocals that should be played across sands on a desolate beach somewhere, and following track ‘Find Your Soul’ is equally as simple and reassuring.
‘Now I’m Dreaming’ is a disarming, electronic lullaby which carefully disturbs the edges of restless sleep with its sweeping synths and mesmeric beats, and on ‘Away From The Monsters’ (feat. Bota & Evelyne) the wispy, haunting vocals and subtle stynths combine to give the effect of someone (or something) stalking between your ears. ‘Memories’ quietly meanders like a stream, but following track ‘It’s Over’ puts a stop to this wandering with it’s measured percussion and Chloe Ann’s quiet, but forthright vocals. ‘We Fade Out’ gracefully closes this minimalist, but sharp album that will appeal to fans of Grimes during her Visions era, or to anyone who enjoys well crafted electronic sounds.