IKE ‘The Great Escape’ Displays Quality & Imagination

With The Great Escape, IKE delivers a cinematic and immersive set which hits the sweet spot between accessible and adventurous.

IKE -The Great Escape

IKE, aka Isaac de Martin, is a Berlin-based, British-Italian musician who makes good use of his eclectic background and global travels, blending acoustic and electronic elements with jazz and a grab-bag of world sounds. Listening to his latest album, The Great Escape, you can’t help but be impressed by the sheer quality and imagination on display.

Opener, “Eva” plunges straight into a whirlpool of beautiful jazz fusion. A simple melody pierces through a cloud of disparate sounds. Keys, guitar, strings, funk-bass and swinging drums coalesce in wholly unexpected ways. Later, the track smooths into a no less arresting blanket of warmth, stretches out, and plunges back into visceral soundtrack territory.

On “Frank I’m Illegal” IKE serves up a delightful slice of oddball humour and clashing sounds. In fact, throughout every track, the artist injects plenty of surprising electronic twists and turns. He is a good enough composer never to let the technical artistry overtake emotional power, however. The Great Escape is by turns playful, experimental and flat-out groovy.

“Ethics Of The Sun” is a good case in point, stretching and contracting over pulsing bass and a sparkling melody. Manipulated notes and broken rhythms abound. Even on the more obtuse tracks, though, IKE shows his compositional strengths. The four vocal cuts, featuring Sera Kalo, are equally impressive. This is wonderfully immersive songwriting, full of emotion and set against a first-class and highly inventive backdrop.

“IKE brings something genuinely distinctive to the table.”

Discover more from IKE

Discover more on RCM

Words Chris Wheatley