Cautionary Wife Posted March 5, 2007 Share Posted March 5, 2007 THE STAR, MALAYSIA By Jason Cheah 5 March 2007 Mika: Life in Cartoon Motion (Universal) Lebanese-born, London-based Mika Penniman is one of the singer-songwriters to watch this year. With a debut commercial chart topper in Grace Kelly, not to mention some underground download hits and limited edition 7-inch vinyls with Relax, Take it Easy and Billy Brown last year, the over-the-top grooves from this young man are bound to smash current boundaries of pop music. Debut album Life in Cartoon Motion has already generated opposing views among critics, whether it's genius songwriting or downright diabolical glam trash. Mika the enigma is anything but boring. But with one of the most wide-ranging vocals (actually praised by none other than Simon Cowell himself a few years ago) and some of the most quirky lyrical material, this 13-track effort does make you sit up and listen. Think Freddie Mercury (with and without Queen), Elton John, a little Rufus Wainright, a bit of George Michael, and even Scissor Sisters and The Darkness Ã¢â‚¬â€œ this outlandish singer songwriter is all of those and more. He is about taking listeners to extremes with glam-up noise balanced with some mellow material and some kitsch-laden flirtations. Some of the titles look like a take on retro hits, but Relax is no cover of Frankie Goes to Hollywood nor Ring Ring a cover of Abba. Mind you, a sample of the melody line from Cutting CrewÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s I Just Died in Your Arms is evident though on Relax. In addition to those tracks and the chart-topping Grace Kelly (yes, itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s something of a tribute to that legendary actress, although it does name check Freddie Mercury), there are also Lollipop (complete with childrenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s chant), the piano-driven Billy Brown and Big Girl (both sounding like a tribute to Queen), to keep you locked on to MikaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s crazy muse. ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s a little in your face, for sure, but that doesnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t detract from an extremely confident voice and some fabulously flamboyant songwriting from this 23-year-old. Definitely one to watch. ---- CW. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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