Rare it is that we have a solo female artist excelling so wonderfully in off-beat electro pop in our green isle as Meljoann on her debut album. Marking her out as an exceptional talent, Squick is the debut album followup to the Tour Guide EP, 12 tracks of slightly quirky, futuristic electro pop, inspired by the “skweee” genre popular in Scandinavia which is known for simple synth lines, bass and draws from soul, funk and R&B.
The stripped-back production driven by synths and innovative percussion allows Meljoann’s fantastic R&B-inspired timbre to shine. She knows her way around a good pop hook to boot. This isn’t X-Factor bandstanding. This is pop music that delights in its eclecticism. ‘So Academic’ is a great opening clincher with its cowbell rhythm and surging synthesizers and tracks like ‘Reptilian’ and ‘Forward Dream’ have an emotional heart and an urgent use of melody that marks the arrangements as occasionally dystopian, blissed-out and totally futuristic. Squick is a singular album and yet another great Irish release to add to 2010.