I love Mika’s music. Sure, the fellow can be quite a pretentious twat from what I can see from his interviews and appearances, but his music is this beautiful-weird amalgamation of outer space meditative mantras and bubble gum pop that I can’t help but to adore. He’s like the love child of Freddie Mercury and David Bowie who somehow lost his way after being led astray by The Osmonds, but there is some moment of genius that still shows underneath all the corn and cheese.
Hence, tracks like Ice Cream, which sees him trying to do his best to channel the late Prince – it’s audacious enough to be worth an applause, at least, and I personally think it’s pretty good. Dear Jealousy is as mainstream pop as it comes, although it sounds a little too much like the offerings of current generic male pop acts at the moment. The key change later in the song turns it into something a little more interesting, though. Same with Cry – it’s a solid, well produced pop song with a very catchy chorus that starts out sounding quite generic, only to become interesting once key changes are introduced.
Sanremo is one of the better tracks here, what with it being a love story set in Italy. It is an evocative track that serves very well as some kind of vicarious trip – very relaxing and feel-good. Tomorrow sees Mika back to channeling his adorable optimistic alien from Planet Sparkles mode, sounding like an enlightened version of that bloke from Roxette, who wants to take us all on a trip in a beautiful balloon. This is his best version of himself, if you ask me – a glorious Mika song is one that takes me to lovely places in my head; soothing, calming places that relax frayed nerves. The best song, oddly enough, is Tiny Love Reprise, which is a gentle, semi-operatic ballad that amalgamates a number of other tracks in this album into one orchestral head trip.
I’m sure Mika will have some pretentious story to explain why this album is called My Name Is Michael Holbrook – probably about finally having found and accepted himself, I’d imagine – but this album boasts the quirky, uplifting sounds that will always be his, thanks to his quirky compositions and voice. Is this his best album to date? No, that is still The Origin of Love, in my opinion, but this one sure is a worthy addition to that fellow’s catalogue.