- ruby crowhurst
KID IN THE CORNER - MISAO MCGREGOR ALBUM REVIEW
Kid in the Corner is the debut album from indie-pop singer-songwriter Misao McGregor. The album is pretty much as honest as it comes and tells a clear story of a journey from childhood to adulthood.
An interesting feature of the album is the way it begins with an almost voice note style interlude with an audio clip from what seems like an old home video in '23 hours old'. However, it's not just in the introductory song you see this unique auditory inclusion, but also with 'Happy Birthday 1999', and subtly in 'Stay in the Desert'. It's not clear whether these audios are real or not, but either way, it really adds to the homely and coming-of-age of the album to have these glimpses of childhood in audio form.
The vocals throughout Kid in the Corner are absolutely stand-out. It's clear to see that McGregor is an incredibly talented vocalist first and foremost, and I wouldn't be surprised if they'd had some kind of vocal training before. Stay in the Desert is a perfect example where these silvery vocals are really pushed, but they really are great throughout every track. It would be really interesting to see if these vocals are reflected live too as if they are, it would be very impressive indeed
A lot of the tracks on Kid in the Corner have a subtle 80s synth to them, but not so strong that it feels like they're trying too hard to be ~from the 80s~ which is what a lot of musicians are doing at the moment.
'B-Major' was a particular stand out song in terms of honesty and reality. The song is simple - just vocals and piano - but the lyrics give you a real glimpse into some genuine life difficulties that many can relate to.
Relatability is one of the key parts of why this album works generally. I'm sure most people will be able to relate to at least one of the tracks on the album, no matter what their transition between child and adult was really like.
'She Was Worlds Above Me' also stood out as a great coming of age storytelling song. It describes the feeling of being in love (or what you think being in love is) at 13, with someone who you feel is out of your reach and it's all set around a middle-school dance. It's a sweet and personal story told over a relatively upbeat synth style instrumental that makes your heart ache a little - in the same way, that reading your teenage diary would.
That's probably the best way to describe McGregor's writing as a whole: like very well-written a teenage diary come to life.
Overall, Kid in the Corner is a very accomplished debut from a small artist Misao McGregor. There's still room for improvement in further records, perhaps with more experimentation with vocals and mixing up the instrumentals a little more.
However, as a first album, it shows a hell of a lot of promise and I look forward to whatever Misao McGregor does next.