Miaoux Miaoux - Light Of The North
Miaoux Miaoux's album, Light Of The North, is a mixed bag of treats. When Glaswegian producer, Julian Corrie, was interviewd by The Scotsman in 2007 in and around the release of his first album, Rainbow Bubbles, his description of the band name can be used to also describe his music.
"When I thought of the name Miaoux Miaoux it was kind of a catch-all phrase for 'anything that I write with no specific purpose' - offcuts, ideas, beats - but it's definitely taken on its own identity. Plus it's the noise that French cats make, and I like cats!"
Now, to reiterate bags and cats - this album is almost as mad as a bag of cats in that Corrie hops from genre to genre in each song. This is not a dance album. This is not an indie-pop album. This is not a post-shoegaze, alt-rock album. This is simply a Miaoux Miaoux album. Non-specific but distinctive.
The opening track, 'Sweep Clean', introduces us to his gentle, airy voice over glitchy, synthy beats. Just when you think that you have sussed out what this album has in store for you, 'Hey Sound' comes along. This is a song that would literally have DJs salivating in order to do a remix of it. And then, he goes and flips it all over again with the dreamy and purely instrumental 'Cloud Computer'. Jagged guitars and that trinkling synth again.
He shuffles between genres with the precision of a noble craftsman and when 'Virtua Fighter' comes on, the seventh track on the album, you are experiencing yet another evolution of his sound. It features the guest vocals from Scottish hip-hop artist, MC Profisee, and his work intertwines starkly yet perfectly with Corrie's own voice.
'Stop The Clocks' is stripped back. Corrie's voice is the leading instrument at work here because aside from the fantastic production and slick mastering, his voice really is quite bitter sweet and beautiful. There are remnants of Death Cab For Cutie's Ben Gibbard's voice in his and this is seen in tracks like 'Stop The Clocks', 'Better For Now' and 'Singing In The Dark'. That being said, do not pigeonhole him simply as something that Seth Cohen would listen to as he pines for Summer Roberts in The OC.
Light Of The North is an album of parts. There are strains of fellow Glaswegian band Errors dithered about which make part of this album very upbeat and, however introverted the lyrics are or whatever echoes of Postal Service you may hear, the varying parts combine to make something very different. If 2012 isn't a big year for Miaoux Miaoux, then I will be very surprised.