by Nathan Cardiff

On Stik Figa’s latest album, the artist has crafted more than just a sound. He gives us a vibe for the whole season. Stik Figa Is Not Quite Himself is the radio playing softly on a summer morning when you wake up and all your windows are open. The early heat has started slipping into the room, the sun washing across your face, and you can smell the grass outside and hear the chatter of the people you will soon come in contact with. The day is ahead of you and anything is possible.

Stik Figa’s world is Kansas, but more specifically Topeka. As a small town kid, my experiences with Topeka are few. But Stik Figa takes a crystal clear picture of what the capital is like; warts and all. And as a transplant, I appreciate all the references (shout-out to Dillons) to the sunflower state; Stik Figa Is Not Quite Himself is a cure for homesickness. Either you’ll want to return or never look back.

Stik Figa doesn’t sentimentalize; he just tells you honestly about his experience. And to go with his lyrics, he has phenomenal instrumentals and beats (horns a-plenty on personal favorites “Big Bro” & “Tenth Ave Allegory”). The massive eighteen tracks (with bonus “No Play In KS,” free to download on his bandcamp page) can be brutal at times, but that’s what makes the record unique. Stik Figa holds nothing back. On “Get It, Got It” he says “Ugly duckling writing the swan song and I’m gone.” But his presence still fills the room and you can hear the echo of his voice even as you walk out the door.

Favorite Tracks: “The Relic,” “Big Bro,” & “Tenth Ave Allegory”

by Nathan Cardiff



Nathan has contributed to I Heart Local Music since November 2012. He lives in Kansas City, MO.

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