Karmin: Hello

Posted November 14, 2012 by in



2/ 5


Genre: Pop, synthpop
Producer: Stargate, Tricky Stewart, Cirkut, Jon Jon, Soundz, The Exclusives, Emily Wright
Label: Epic
Format: Cd, digital download
Time: 24:36
Release Date: 4 May 2012
Spin This: Brokenhearted


"Brokenhearted" saves the day


It's an EP that overdulges itself on Amy Heidemann's rapping

Short LP jumpstarts Karmin’s popdom, but comes off as too comical

by J Matthew Cobb
Full Article

Short LP jumpstarts Karmin’s popdom, but comes off as too comical

Berklee college grads Amy Heidemann and Nick Louis Noonan catapulted themselves into fame as hip-hop cover acts on YouTube. Now under L.A. Reid’s watch, the engaged couple known as Karmin has kicked out Hello, a short EP that acts as a premonition of what’s to come from the versatile duo.

For marketing reasons, there’s no better way to make an industry introduction to the masses than with a hearty hello. Unfortunately the title track is buried on the short player’s end, which seems a bit abberant. Despite the processional setback, the actual opener does a better job in defining Karmin’s musical identity. Using the Black Eyed Peas’ “Just Can’t Get Enough” as a template, “Walking on the Moon” places attention on Heidemann’s rap craft. As an emcee, she comes off as a dated Kriss Kross prodigy, although she manages to spit out some playful rhymes (“Just left earth, now we on our way to Pluto/Call it what you want we’re the daringest duo”). Throughout the rhythmic seven-track set, Heidemann tries on her different rap hats, including Nicki Minaj (“I Told You So”) and Left-Eye (I’m Just Sayin’”). But the rapping is only a distraction from the obvious attraction aboard Hello: “Brokenhearted.” The catchy tune flirts with Katy Perry glitz and Maroon 5 poppiness, while pulling off cool post-disco struts. Here Heidemann’s raps are limited to appropriate Spice Girls chit-chat, while her vocals shine with radio pizzazz. For the most part, Heidmann’s partner in crime, Nick Noonin, hides mostly behind the shadows as a principal songwriter and occasional hook vocalist (seen on “Coming Up Strong”) and he’s joined by a sweet collaboration of top-notch producers (Tricky Stewart, Jon Jon, StarGate).

In the end, Hello virtually sounds like a satisfactory copy-and-paste job of Top 40: “Too Many Fish” sounds like a playful Beyonce’ handclapper ; a brief Nirvana sample seems to be buried beneath the Rihanna-spiked “Hello.” But let the too-soft-for-hip-hop castrations sit at bay for a minute. Hello is a safe, but appeasable EP; a friendly reminder of their YouTube roots and the hopefulness they might bring on the next round. Hopefully they will start to take their own selves seriously, slack off some of the LMFAO comicalness and better balance out the rap with the pop.


About the Author

J Matthew Cobb

Managing editor of HiFi Magazine


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