Hiatus Kaiyote – “Breathing Underwater” (video)

Neo-soul it band Hiatus Kaiyote release a striking new video for "Breathing Underwater" from Choose Your Weapon.

Timothy Gabriele: Nothing quite like a song that catches you off guard. Having no context for who this group is or what they’re all about, it was impressive to hear this song navigate across about four different aesthetic paths in its first minute or so before settling into its contorted path. This style-hopping is not executed in a meandering or intentionally obfuscating way though. Its many mysteries are bold and intertwined enough to make it fully engrossing without hurling the listener off its tilt-a-whirl of frequent change-ups. Neo-soul prog sounds a revolting concept, one that should make my fingers bleed as I type it, but it’s actually really ace stuff here. It must be an acute, acrobatic balance to not topple over into unlistenable treacle given this set of parameters, which leads me to believe we’re in the presence of some masters here. [7/10]

Evan Sawdey: This group was initially sold to me as a kind of space-damaged iteration of retro-soul revivalists the Dap-Kings, but their whole album was brimming with neo-soul affectations, smart arrangements, and such a definitive personality right out the great. When I hear “Breathing Underwater”, I hear a bit of everything: jazzy undertones, Jill Scott sensibilities, and the kind of vibe that Prince would love to have in one of his touring outfits, but even more than that, I hear a group bursting out the gate with something really unique on their hands. Terrible band name aside, keep this on your radar, as their full-length, Choose Your Weapon, is already one of 2015’s sleeper surprises. [8/10]