Miwa Gemini - This is How I Found You
Record Label: Addictive Records
Release Date: October 9, 2007
Miwa Gemini’s latest record This is How I Found You, released by the Canadian label Addictive Records, has unparallel beauty and classic elegance shrouded in soft rock fantasies. Miwa has the enchanting vocals of a French cabaret singer managing to wrap her audience around her finger with complete ease. The music falls under her spell as well, lining her bewitching vocal sweeps with a series of soft guitar tangles, whispering drums and complementing knolls in the keyboards on tracks like “Picnic” and “Something Ordinary,” and then shifting to the seductive-salon styled vocals of Bobby Gentry for the country-tinged “Traveling Man” with banjo and mandolin shakes railing along freight-train rhythms. Her songs have an alternative-pop glare relatable to Jesca Hoop and Mindy Smith taking advantage of a voice that resonates splendidly through valleys and over mountain tops.
Miwa’s vocals have a femininity reflective of A Fine Frenzy displaying both a delicateness and a strong will. Miwa’s songs draw the listener in with the sweet voicing of a lyre and the tender touch of being covered in a bath of rose petals most noticeable in the melody for “Room of You.” Her voice echoes deeper and strums tighter over the rocky shoals of “Angel’s Prayer,” and then strokes gently over the silky guitar melodics of “Paperwhites.” The track “Crazy Over You” has a softcore punk pumping vibrating through its chord movements and the flotilla of ethereal-pop riffs on “Forever For Never” have breezy guitar ascents that brush pleasingly in the listener’s ear.
Miwa’s lyrics awaken the dreamer and the lost soul in us all, drifting listlessly looking to settle down somewhere while experiencing requited love along the way. Her words seduce like a lover and reveal feelings of being jilted by lovers. When she intones, “Tomorrow we’ll go on a picnic on a hill / I’ll wear dandelions you picked, in my hair / We’ll walk around holding hands like old sweethearts / We’ll watch the sun rise and the sun set / Wouldn’t that be grand / Just you and me… I can make you smile again,” from “Picnic,” one must ask herself, “Is she is a good sorceress or an evil one?” Her words are like spells that aim at the heart of human vulnerabilities with the intention to mend what has been scorched, daggered, and flogged. Maybe she is a good sorceress afterall.
Miwa is unlike any commercial artist out there, and yet, they can all learn something from her. As a Japanese-American singer-songwriter, Miwa’s voice and music shows Asian influences and accents with an Oriental flange, but her songs also have many western elements embracing everything from country to pop/rock. Miwa performs on guitars, mandolin, piano, and banjo and her sidekick Brian Lackey plays the drums. Following in the footprints of her debut LP in 2005 entitled Forgetful Ocean and Other Strange Stories, her second full length album This is How I Found You is ethereal pop showing dreamy atmospherics in their melodic odes and a larynx gifted with the bowing resonance of archangels. Miwagemini’s music has a timeless beauty that if I ever lost my copy of This is How I Found You, I would hope that the album would still be in print so I could replace it.