Review by Nhu Nguyen
Mademoiselle Yulia is as fabulous as her stage name. She is a DJ for many high-profile parties in Tokyo, designer for jewelry line GIZA, columnist for NYLON Japan, and also a singer!
A quick search of the musician on Google will show her donning diverse and edgy outfits, her hair in a signature striking-blue Cleopatra-esque cut. Her debut album MADEMOWORLD released in September 2011 is as eclectic to the ears as her fashion is to the eyes.
Single track “GIMME GIMME” and its’ PV best encompass what the album is: pop and hip as hell. Her singing style on the track is a little hip-hop, and the song is layered with atmospheric electronic samples and loops. After listening to the rest of the album, other songs quickly displace “GIMME GIMME” as my favorite, like “WAO” featuring album producer M-Flo’s VERBAL, or the alternative “ZODIAC GOLD” that hooks me from the get-go with infectious drum beats and dark surf-style guitars.
Judging from her club culture background, I anticipated the album to be filled with tracks like “Luxury of You”, with its heavy bass line, electronic whirs, and almost whisper-like vocals that she displays during the slower beats of the song. However, this album surprised me with its diverse group of songs. It has a touch of every decade between the 20s and today. Jazz track “DOWN DOWN” belongs in a speakeasy with its low horns and finger snaps. While her voice seems at times a bit lost in the melody, the track shows off her classy and sophisticated side. Upbeat and peppy “BAM ME” is a mix of 1960s American girl groups like The Ronettes and 80s synths.
MADEMOWORLD keeps the vibe in the dance pop realm, from darkwave 80s influenced “You Can’t Have Me that Way” to the cute party track “REPLAY”. Songs like “MIDNIGHT EXPRESS”, “Don’t Stop the Music” , and “TOUCH ME” will keep your feet moving long into the night.
There is only one low point to the album, found in the R&B, hip-hop track “Chronic.” The piece puts a halt to the album’s great flow, and it’s not due to the fact that it’s a ballad. The piano is boring and some of the notes are too low for her.
Overall, MADEMOWORLD is very stylish and well-produced. It makes sense when people call Mademoiselle Yulia the “Asian Lady Gaga” — with this album, she proves to be a trendsetter both in fashion and music.