Beginning in 2012 with her first release Count to Five, Michika Mclinton created Tantrum. Her latest release Omagari Town is an electro-inspired album that sounds big. Big in the way that neo- futuristic-Tokyo might feel like on acid. Big in the way that this is the type of music they might be playing before the apocalypse comes. As big as the sound is, it sometimes suffers from production issues. Mainly, I wanted to hear her voice more. It was a bit too buried in the mix and the low-end, while awesome, was masking her voice, which sounded perfect for this type of music. The drums are huge and hard-hitting. I often imagined tribal characters hitting archaic instruments as hard as they could. While the music was good, her voice was better. It was very commanding when I could hear it clearly. Not unlike Gang Gang Dance, her voice soared at times even if often undermined by the music.
The opener “Count to Five” was a really catchy song, which made use of a steady heavy bass drum as bell-like synths created a backdrop for her vocals. The second song “Who We Are” is full on energy and is a pretty aggressive onslaught of drums and bass synths. The music was good but again I would have loved to hear more of her vocals. I felt they were supporting the music and it should have been the other way around. “Day of Fun” made better use of her infectious vocals and I was happy to hear her experimenting with them and making them more of a focal point than the other songs. The only slower song on the album, “livlykeumytedye,” was a good change of pace but could have been a hindrance had it lasted much longer then it did. “Manatee,” the closing track, was probably the most pop-oriented song of the album not unlike something that might remind you of Bjork.
Tantrum is a case where you see a lot of talent that with the proper team backing it up could become golden. Namely, a good producer and sound engineer with the right chemistry could take this project to the next level. By clearing up some of the clutter and drawing more attention to her vocals you would have a winning combination. That being said this album packs in a lot of great ideas that while not fully realized are pretty damn impressive.
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