Thursday, May 30 2024

The age-old adage of ‘if you’re good enough, you’re old enough’ springs to mind when you first listen to kidd noir. ‘Mr. Who Knows (Messiah)’ is the second offering from the 18-year-old hailing from Germany and already the signs are we could have something very special in the offing. Whereas, first single, ‘LNBR’ showcased a mellow, dreamlike quality with floating harmonies, repetitive picked guitars and was generally well produced, the follow-up shows us more of kidd noir’s capabilities.  

From the opening Latin infused guitar motif there is a definite sense of movement and groove, enhanced by good percussive elements and chromatic keys following a melodic minor pattern. It’s all very effective and very engaging. Playful dynamic shifts lull the listener in and are at odds with the weighty narrative, but this juxtaposition strengthens the uniqueness of the song and allows kidd noir free reign to expertly deliver some rather impressive word play.  

The production is sleek and well balanced and even the introduction of distorted guitar is managed as not to be jarring and obtrusive. The ensuing guitar solo follows the same Latin – musical theme – as it’s base – and is effective, not flamboyant, there’s no need to be; tidy phrasing and modulating between octaves is more than enough to keep it interesting, as is the double bend/release as if to tease the end of the solo, before a continuation after a single beat pause. All very clever and perhaps an indicator of a wider musical palette than suggested in kidd noir’s press release? 

kidd noir

Vocally, kidd noir delivers prose in a low, controlled, semi-rapped style, never deviating too far from a comfortable natural tone, but liberally garnishing with tight harmonies throughout and showcasing a vocal range to good effect. Laying somewhere between Lorde and Billie Eilish, it’s a safe, modern voice that never over enunciates, indeed that is definitely a reflection of this era of vocalist; the low drawl. Whether by accident or design, regardless, it’s a voice that sits well with the music and is very good on the ear – at least to my ear! 

It’s difficult to categorise kidd noir. Or rather, it’s too early to categorise her. I welcome that level of ambiguity. I think indie-pop, Shoegaze, alternative-rock are certainly audible within kidd noir’s brief, yet engaging catalogue, but I have a sense that she could go in any direction she wanted, incorporate any influence with minimal fuss and we’d all willingly lap it up. It’s an impressive trajectory that she finds herself on and we will all eagerly await kidd noirs next release, for what is sure to be another stellar offering. 

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Review

Summary

‘Mr Who knows (Messiah)’ by kidd noir delivers an eclectic burst of indie fused with Latin grooves. A strong second release from this promising up and coming new artist.
85%
Catchy and engaging

Rating

Song Quality
Vocal Performance
Lyrics
Instrumentation
Production

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About Author

Gareth Johnston

Gareth Johnston is a Lancashire based musician and producer who studied music at MMU. He is a former reviewer for 'Glitzine' and when not writing for 'The Indie Grid' can be found restoring old furniture whilst listening to obscure alt-rock. He has too many favourite bands to pick one and insists it's easier to pick a favourite child.

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