Album Review: Hourglass by Mako

I’ve realized lately that the best electronic music isn’t defined by the genre. I know it’s a broad genre, but people typically think of hard synths and generic vocals when they hear “electronic,” “dance,” or “EDM.” It really depends on how you define the genre and subgenres. I don’t think Hourglass by Mako is necessarily electronic, but I do think it is a great album with amazing songs.

“This is our story…”

Mako Hourglass

I’ll start out by mentioning my two favorite songs on the album. Oddly enough, they’re the opening and closing songs. “Let Go of the Wheel” is a giant song, and what I mean by that is that it fills up the room with its stunning sound. The chorus, with its booming synths, comes in beautifully after the delicate intro vocals. It’s mournful, and triumphant at the same time.

“Our Story (Hourglass Finale)” is a reworked version of “Our Story,” a single which Mako released a while back. I absolutely loved the original, but this version of the song is arguably better. Not only does it fit the album in a way the other song couldn’t, it’s almost like a brand new song while still maintaining the essence of the original. Its creamy vocals and dreamlike synths crescendo at the end with a percussion heavy finale. So good.

“Smoke Filled Room” and “Craziest Day I Ever Had” are two other standouts on Hourglass. “Craziest Day I Ever Had” is the funnest song on the album, cushioned between two soft, emotional tracks. “Run for Your Life feat. Natalola” is the only song on the album with a different lead vocalist. It’s a nice change of sound for the album and I actually would have liked one or two other songs featuring other vocalists.

My favorite part of this album is how easy it is to listen to the whole thing through. There are albums out there where I prefer to pick out songs and listen to them on their own. Hourglass is an album where the whole is even better than the parts. There are a few songs on this album that aren’t my favorites, but they’re great in the context of the whole album.

I think Mako absolutely nailed their debut with Hourglass. I’m going to be listening to this one for a while.

4.5/5

“Your Musical Taste Is Bad and You Should Feel Bad”

Music is the lifeblood of my soul, the essence of my joy. Don’t worry, I’m not writing a poem for you in this post. I was writing a poem, but I decided it was really bad and that I should write about taste in music instead.

“Some Kind of Magic”

When two geniuses collide.

When two geniuses collide.

Music is amazing and every culture has created some form of it, no matter how alien it might be to us. We all listen to it, even if only once in a while due to our busyness or varying degree of passionate involvement (Wow. That was awkwardly phrased). I grew up with orchestral soundtracks, chiptunes, and midi songs, as well as Japanese rock. I am currently into electro-pop, with a little rock thrown in occasionally. That’s great and everything, but what if I told you that I think country music is eardrum-destroyingly-horrible to me? Not “what if,” I’m actually telling you that I hate it.

“Setting Fires”

Illenium Ashes

Electronic albums are a thing of the present.

Why do we feel the need to trash other people’s interests? Can’t we just let everyone enjoy their music in peace? Maybe that’s the thing; there are times when we’re forced to listen to other people’s music, music we dislike with an equal but opposite passion that is associated with the songs we love (Another awkwardly phrased sentence for you). There is definitely room for musical critique, but saying that someone else’s musical opinion is “trash” is another matter. Now, the music they listen to may actually be trash, but you don’t have to tell them that. Just say, “That song is not relevant to my interests.” or something along those lines.

In all seriousness, maybe one reason we hate on other music is due to some fear that we hold. Sharing music you like with others can be a deeply personal experience. It doesn’t always go the way you want it to. Sometimes your friends talk over the song you show them or they just don’t end up liking it. Maybe trashing other songs is our way of asserting our opinion on music as authoritative.

“I Feel the Love” – “How to Love” – “Crazy Love”

Loooooooooooove.

What’s the deal with including “love” in the title of every freaking song? I get that it’s a strong feeling as well as an important one, but come on. Pet peeve.

So what’s the conclusion? Love the music that you love and let others love what they love so that everyone can love each other. What’s that? Another country has bombed another country? Didn’t you guys read this post?!

Just keep making and listening to music! Here’s some of mine.