Limited to 150 copies in gatefold cover, with bonus instrumental LP.
The regular album is black, the instrumentals are magenta. Mieke Miami's "Montecarlo Magic", the follow-up album to her debut "In the Forest", (2016, Sonar Kollektiv) no longer darkens through the forest, but there is truly no light constraint either. Rather a special, positive mood that radiates inward and outward, describing a state that seems to be inner contemplation and journey at the same time: Florida, California and Brandenburg nestle very close to each other here. Perhaps a river still rattles through the picture and certainly somewhere magicians*innen play with things hide: intoxicated, dreamy and certainly easy to find. Because in this world no one should look around for anything. Find what you want, says Mieke.
Right away the opener "Californio" makes me think of a stay in Los Angeles, an imagined Los Angeles, more imagined than real. Absurd: I was still invited there in February 2020. Silver Lake, in the first light of a new day. Walking along a spring morning, I hear from the garden of a hippie commune this chorus with bright bell piano, space echoes and fine refrain wafting over. "Californio ...". How close it gets to me? Very. I'd like to go back to where this music is playing and realize that this is happening just as much there, in that distant LA at a certain time, as it is in the here and now in me. Beautifully displaced simultaneity. The single "Horse", pre-released at the end of 2020, tells quite a lot about it: bass clarinet and the constant Angerauschte, loose, casual, played. An atmosphere of voices, instruments, delays and, if at all necessary, more painted than planned, the image of a (in itself) polyphonic world.
Unison different: bridges and choirs slipped from front to back, singing sometimes lead sometimes back. Generously overlapping themes, verses, choruses to song worlds. Which you can listen to like this or like that, says the artist. All get into each other, without effort and with horny opacity: Montecarlo Magic.
A confession: yes, I immediately thought, "'Californio' = Los Angeles, garden, world, music, and that hidden yet tangible new humility, hippie USA." I thought all that. But then Mieke tells me about ghost ships, souls and wanderings, and danger? No, it fits. Every dream is true, Yes and No, A and Not-A one: "So many out-of-the-way things had happened lately, that Alice had begun to think that very few things indeed were really impossible." '***
Soon this cover version of the Beatles will follow! Who does something like that? "Cry Baby Cry" Maybe the Fab Four in their Los Angeles days? Wiki says India. White album, Lennon on the peak. Supposedly he doesn't like the track later, here it fits. And Mieke Miami becomes, so to speak, for a very brief moment, the most humble John Lennon in the world, and then dreams on, and the band, which is actually herself, dreams itself alongside her.
A record like a garden: "The king was in the garden picking flowers for a friend who came to play." '**. So nice to hear something from John Lennon again and easy translated. Thanks Mieke.
And where I just thought myself listening to Los Angeles and India, doing something mysterious and simple, the record now leads me - via bumper cars and Abbey Road - via London to San Francisco: Swimming Pool. A street-of-Francisco feeling, with guitars and choirs - and soulful grooves that are as oppressive as they are pleasantly dirty. Nix urban soul though, but country road soul, which triggers a crazy wanderlust right now (and far beyond now). And at the same time dissolves it, because whoever listens is amazed - and understands: Brandenburg, Florida, California: It's all here. This melancholic wanderlust likes to blow away completely in the pollen of the places and regions of our desire. More than ever.
The last song: "Golden Ships" is then actually my favorite title, because then I can already start again with this magic music.
Mieke Miami - Montecarlo Magic appears in the second Corona summer on Fun in the Church. Dit fits