Album Review: Meiko – Moving Day – Winner of #NewMusicFriday Ep 3
I don’t know the first time I ever heard Meiko, but I’m pretty sure it was on Last.fm several years ago. I always kept an eye out for her and when we finally got a submission from her, I was floored. After including her in the third episode of New Music Friday, I was thrilled that the “people” voted for this full review, giving me a reason to spend some serious time with this exceptionally talented singer songwriter. I definitely recommend Meiko’s Moving Day for a full listen (and probably purchase).
Meiko has a sensitive vocal delivery. She makes you want to relax in your chair a bit more and really just listen. Her dancing vocals bounce from sincere and soft to these higher trills up into her upper register. It’s really hard to explain the effect, but the opening track “I Do” immediately gets to it. “I doooooo love you,” the repetitive lyric, expresses not only a sense of genuine love, but also of whimsy. It feels like an afternoon cuddle with no place to go and all day to get there.
The easy bluesy track “Hold On” is a bit more like a Brandi Carlisle kind of tune. That said, Meiko’s vocals are just sweet enough to make you feel all of the emotions. “Hold on, it’s going to be a bumpy road tonight.” Yeah, we’ve all been there. It’s about having that special person in your life who holds you in the hard times. It’s such a simply poetic song, it’s almost uncanny.
“Big City” is a great song because it comments on the complex communication within a relationship. “Where do we go when we are all alone?” It’s a question with physical and existential overtones. Who are you, really? The hypnotic, repetitive structure of the song will lull listeners to sleep. The relaxed nature of the vocal feels deeply relaxing.
“I can’t tell” has a cool, groovy 70s feel to it. Again the vocal quality of Meiko shines through. The whole “I can’t help how I feel” riff is pretty much how we all have felt at one point in our lives. The backing vocals and groovin’ style on the song is just perfect for the middle of this album. “Pretty Easy” has a nice mixed meaning. It seems to be coming from an ironic perspective, but the chill rock vibe of it comes across as serene and meaningful.
“For the Road’ is another chill rock track, but has more of a dynamic feeling to it. It is largely repetitive and it seems to work nicely. It sets up the final, sublime track “Little Baby.” Unsurprisingly it’s kind of a lullaby, with a blush of being a “bedtime story” in its own right, complete with adventure and hope and beauty. “I want to get back to the place we started…” If it were a song in color, it would be in pastel colors. The texture of Meiko’s voice is absolutely cathartic on this one, even as she addresses complex, adult issues.
This album is sure to make a lot of fans. Meiko’s unmistakable vocal quality is often sweet, but her lyrics have a tendency to sneak up on you. It seems like a sweet, unassuming song until out of nowhere you find yourself thinking about an ex, a fight, or a moment of beauty enough to make you cry. This is an excellent album in the way that it rises and falls like Meiko’s own intricate vocals, taking listeners on an emotive journey.