DIE MILCH – Metronom

Baroque pop goodness

Die Milch’s debut album Metronom boasts a superb collection of baroque pop tunes with a strong sense of classical influences and contemporary musical touches.

Instrumental opening track ‘Dynamite’ acts in many ways as an overture to the album with its dramatic string-driven composition. But if there’s one track that stands out on the album, it’s ‘Rosaria’ which combines Coco’s dynamic vocal range with a driving tune bolstered by strings and harpsichord.

Much of the vocal elements on Metronom include snippets of Coco singing in English – often less for clarity and more for using specific combination of words to create an effect, such as on ‘Operette’ or the scaled rhythms and beats of ‘It’s Necessary’ – a track which steers Die Milch closer to a more traditional pop tune arrangement.

Metronom also features a selection of instrumentals that are built around energetic strings arrangements, handled by Die Milch collaborators Jasmine on violin and Leira on cello. At times it recalls the cello-driven melodies of fellow gothic pop artist Kanon Wakeshima, as on the strident strings of ‘Daina’, while ‘Tempest’ utilises the strengths of Jasmine’s violin (with some harpsichord for good effect).

人形に恋した男 (roughly translated as “the man who fell in love with a doll”) offers up a more measured and gentle composition which is built around Coco’s compelling vocals.
‘Operette’ opens with a wonderful harpsichord introduction before switching to a clockwork-inspired melody that serves as a perfect showcase for Coco’s broad vocal range. It’s ‘Operette’ which perhaps also illustrates the doll-aesthetic that Coco is keen to embody through the work of Die Milch.

Closing number ‘Gute Nacht’ manages to serve as a perfect counter-point to ‘Dynamite’ while Coco breathes a more delicate vocal over the plucked melodies of this gem of a tune.

Metronom is a powerful demonstration of the talents of Coco and her collaborators as part of Die Milch. Amongst the personnel for the album is Masahiro Abo, who handles Metronom’s sound production. Masahiro has an extensive resume of artists that he’s worked with previously, including Visual Kei outfit Alice Nine as well as Akiyasumi, Kai Ato, Saori Iikubo, and Kazuya Ito.

Metronom is a strong debut album and suggests that Die Milch are going to be become an outfit to watch in the future.

Metronom is available via the J-Pop Go online shop.

Die Milch also appeared as part of Milk Tea Day in December 2013.