The Leaky Faucet: Mika – Songs For Sorrow

by Dakin Hardwick on May 22, 2009


Retail Release Date: June 8th, 2009 (only available on

Leaky Faucet Acquisition Date: May 15h, 2009

Mika is a singer-songwriter from Lebanon via England.  He released a record in 2007 called Life In Cartoon Motion, a glorious pop record that was equal parts Donna Summer, Queen, Rufus Wainwright, and Erasure.  He also writes songs that tell stories so vividly that one could call him the Bruce Springsteen of disco.

On May 15th, he’s releasing an EP of acoustic songs to tide people over until his next full length record, due out next year.  He also enlisted some of his favorite artists to make original works to help tell the stories on this EP. The EP kicks off with a bit of a surprise.  It’s a song called “Blue Eyes,” and it starts off with a bit of afro-pop acoustic guitar picking, reminiscent of mid-80’s Paul Simon or Vampire Weekend.  In fact, this track could fit alongside any song on Paul Simon’s classic record Graceland and nobody would be the wiser.

The next track is a somber piano ballad called “Lady Jane.”  Mika uses his falsetto for this number, but unlike most male singers that use such singing for bombast, he uses it to create a sense of tenderness.

The next track is called “Lonely Alcoholic,” another ballad.  It reminds me a bit of Billy Joel’s “Piano Man,” where it jumps between several examples of sadness, but slowly transitions in to an epic sing-a-long.  It’s one of those great “everyone has it rough, so let’s make the best of it” tales.

The last song is a piece called “Toy Boy.”  It’s a waltz, filled with strings and clarinet.  I can’t tell if it’s a tale of abuse or a story of whimsy … a telltale sign of a great songwriter, and I hope that next year’s full length upholds the quality of this brief release.

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