Madeline Kenney's debut album 'Night Night at the First Landing' was a fuggy tapestry of lo fi drums and electronic reverb. On the one hand, the record demonstrated Kenney’s particular skill for fitting together multi-layered vocal melodies. At the same time it felt constrained by the density of its production, with too many cloying mid-range harmonies at times resulting in a cloying mass.

On Perfect Shapes the singer and multi-instrumentalist takes a leap into more textured, clearer waters, replacing the epic sweep of her debut with clean, sharp edges and more space and air.

Where ‘Night Night…’ was arch, ‘Perfect Shapes’ rattles along at a good old pace, with nods to a host of other contemporaries (Clean Cut Kid on the poppy ‘Cut Me Off’; The Staves on ‘Know’) and a wry sense of humour. The final line of single 'Cut Me Off' ('And don't / cut me off') is deleted as if by a slip of the studio mouse. Beatles-y melodic shifts and playful saxophone are scattered through the excellent 'No Weekend'.

The album, which its writer proudly proclaims as being almost entirely created by women - including composition, artwork, mastering, and performance - takes a whole bunch of influences and delivers a sweet sort of pop trifle; clever melodies and instrumentation at the base, steady beats and bass in the middle, and a smattering of toytown samples and whimsical sparkle on top.

Kenney has a finely tuned sense of the absurd, and of how to develop melodies and song structures to suggest progression without putting too many elements into the mix. A succession of backwards vocals and bent keyboard lines are employed to fill out the sound on 'Flavours of the Fruit Tree'. 'I Went Home' proudly refuses to settle into a single easy melody, instead wrestling together a series of closed lines studded with wonky guitars.

If I have a criticism, it's only that Kenney's vocal delivery is so similar to other artists with new records out this year (Ohmme, Alela Diane, the forthcoming new Arc Iris long player) that distinguishing between them isn't always very easy. This, coupled with a slight lack of light and shade to define the record, can make it seem a little safe. The fuzzy 'Your Art' breaks the routine somewhat and consequently stands out as a highlight.

That said, the rate of progression between her first and second albums is impressive. Perfect Shapes is a confident step forward. It all bodes well for whatever shapes come next.