What does Melissa Weikart sound like?
A bewitching chamber pop songwriter who isn’t afraid to dance to her own tune.
The review of Melissa Weikart – Here, There
There is something wildly freeform about Melissa Weikart’s musical style. The vast majority of her album “Here, There” revolves around her voice and the piano but there isn’t anyone prepared to deconstruct their own songs quite like Weikart does.
Almost every track on this short album has something utterly offkey or wrong timed about it. It’s as if Melissa is determined to break free from the shackles of a standard melody or time signature and so each song spirals off on its own axis to chaotic and at times psychedelic intrigue. The snazzy violent cabaret piano chord stabs of opener “Diamond” give a nod towards where the album is heading as short pauses for breath and space land purposely with an atonal note. The title track “Here, There” then sets up the frenzied paranoia that runs throughout the album. As Melissa sings “All I want is to be wrapped in your arms”, the piano riff that accompanies it gets increasingly more detuned. The words sing of love and comfort, the piano suggests a transition to unhealthy habits.
Swirling paranoia and mystical uncertainty reach a fever pitch with “High Time”. As Weikart repeats “Searching for you makes me tired”, the music switches between panic speedy twirls and clumsy piano strained moments that clash with dissonant vocal delivery. “Ocean Song” is possibly the most accessible track on the album and also my personal favourite. Melissa Weikart sings like a siren as the chorus wades out a sea of arpeggio dreams on the piano. Even here, the bridge is a powerful piano motif that rings out notes of caution purposely rocking unusual chord and note structures.
Not content with unusual melodies, “Testing” plays fantastically with tempo and beat. The song is like a stream of mental consciousness that just flits around like teenage ADHD having an existential crisis. The final trio of tracks see Melissa Weikart begin to converge towards a Mitski and Fiona Apple hybrid of emotional mining whilst keeping her own style. “Shiver” is the token soothing ballad, although soothing is somewhat pushing it! There’s more of a classical flair with “Who Made It” that feels quite timeless whilst Melissa purrs and purges over the top of dainty melodies. Along with closer “Happy” though, there’s a perfectly placed minor or seventh plonk to shake the comfort into something more sinister. “Happy” especially transitions into a furious bass note outro as if we’re breaking free of a fake body prison.
“Here, There” is over in just 23 minutes but each minute is a golden one. It might be a bit too “out there” for some – in which case, how did you make it onto this website?! Melissa Weikart straddles beautifully unhinged and creative abundance to make one of the best albums of 2022 to date. If you are looking for an exciting new female singer-songwriter who owns her demons and her piano like no other peer – Melissa Weikart has you covered.
Recommended track: Ocean Song
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