Ioanna Gika is a Greek-American singer songwriter that has been floating in the ether for a little while now as a member of IO Echo and playing shows with the likes of DIIV and Deafheaven. She has now been signed to Sargent House for the release of her debut solo album Thalassa, which will come out on April 5th. Speaking on the inspiration for Thalassa, Ioanna Gika says:

"A series of deaths drew me home to Greece. The city of my childhood memories was in disrepair. I drove past painted swastikas towards burial sites. I said goodbyes and grieved for those I didn’t get to say goodbye to. Thalassa is about going through change that is unwanted yet unstoppable. It is a document of the dread, the adrenaline, and the surrender in the moments when you realize the only way to survive is to brace yourself and go through."

In new single 'Out of Focus' we feel pulled into the body of Gika as she moves among her homeland, surrounded by despair and disrepair on all sides. Walls of tension-filled strings and synths rise up on either side, threatening to collapse in on Gika. 'Out of Focus' never reaches a true crescendo, but the tension certainly rises palpably, giving the song a thrilling feeling of claustrophobia, but from within Gika remains strong, her voice radiating out from within her hardened soul. Moving through 'Out of Focus' we can see and feel Gika's grief, but deeper than that is also a beauty that speaks to the transience of life and hope of new beginnings just around the corner.

The video for 'Out of Focus' conceptualises things even further, with world surf champion Jake Caster as the Greek god Pan, surfing battering waves while Ioanna Gika is singing right alongside him. Check it out below.

Ioanna Gika's debut album Thalassa is out April 5th via Sargent House.

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