A glorious mish mash
Niamh Pillinger
17:12 12th November 2020

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Fronted by ex-Cherry Glazerr bassist Livvy Bennet, Mamalarky fuse a multitude of influences to create a unique prog-indie rock sound. With the rest of the band members having their own musical backgrounds – keyboard and synth bass player Michael Hunter plays with White Denim, and drummer Dylan Hill with Big Wy’s brass band – there is no shortage of inspiration on their eponymous debut. 

Penultimate track ‘Drug Store Model’ is a joyful spin on the feelings Bennet experienced following her post-college move to LA. All about feeling lost and not fitting into the local scene, the track is a seemingly carefree reassurance that things will sort themselves out in time. In the chorus - “Mercury say c’est la vie eureka I set free your thoughts of me to Venus fly traps..." - and the tumbling, synth-laden instrumental closing the song, it seems to egg you on to stress a little less about your life and your place in it, and let things settle into place around you.

Throughout their debut, Bennet’s hyper-personal lyrics make the songs super relatable, especially in the case of tracks such as ‘Schism Trek’. Initially inspired by the fact that these band members are split between Austin and LA, over lockdown the single took on a new meaning. The chorus repeatedly questioning "how is it fair to love someone who’s never really there?” is a feeling that has become all too common during separation from friends and families, but meshing these emotions with the consistently upbeat melodies leaves you with a real sense of tranquillity. With a beautiful flow between experimental jamming and peaceful instrumentals, the album is music for the soul. The twinkly, almost liquid nature of ‘Cosine’ and ‘Hero’ soothe you like slipping into a warm pool, providing a sense of respite in a world that is currently so manic and strange.

The self-titled debut album that Mamalarky have spent the past two years working on is a glorious mish mash of all the things their “very millennial listening habits” give them access to. From ABBA’s Spanish greatest hits album ABBA Oro: Grandes Éxitos, to a range of classical, jazz and instrumental music, listening with abandon has allowed this band to create something similarly eclectic. Despite this mixture of such disparate influences, Mamalarky achieve a cohesive, well-realised sound that will be exciting to watch develop with future releases.

Mamalarky arrives 20 November on Fire Talk Records. 

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Photo: Press