2011 – Independent
Gypsy/ Punk/ Ska/ Folk
The debut EP from Brisbane based gypsy fusion rockers The Mouldy Lovers is a swinging, swaying record full of frantic energy and skilled playing. The whole thing kicks off with the title track which just grabs the listener with its bouncing rawness and draws them into the group’s weird world of gypsies, jazz, ironic Stalinism, and good old-fashioned punk fun.
I will say, however, that the production on this EP is a little flat for my tastes. I mean, there’s nothing particularly wrong with it per se, that is everything can be heard fine, but the whole just lacks a certain depth. Due to this small shortcoming I did find it difficult at times to get properly lost in this particular collection of tunes. I think, perhaps, this release might have benefitted from a little bit of breathing room between the plethora of instruments that make up this funky little band.
Despite this failing in the recording department this release flows through pretty nicely moving from track to track easily and showing off a pleasing range of influences, such as the ska of Urchins of Svetlograd and the geek-rock of Korobeiniki (perhaps better known as the Tetris Theme). Each track seems to add another little layer of what the band can do to this short little sampler, and for me this was something really nice to hear. All too often a band’s first EP is merely four versions of what is essentially the same track, but I really can’t say that at all about Kakistocracy.
What I will say though is that the band’s vocal deliveries in the one lyric containing track leave rather a lot to be desired. For me the tone of the whole thing was actually brought down at this point of the CD for little other reason than the fact that the vocals were so incredibly weak. Perhaps this is once again a fault in the recording, but to my ears it definitely seemed to be more likely an underdeveloped part of The Mouldy Lovers’ abilities. I mean, they can all apparently play their chosen instruments to a more than proficient level, but perhaps more standard style tunes are a little beyond them at this point in their careers.
Due to this weakness in the vocals and subsequent tendency to perform more with instrumental tracks I can’t really see the band gaining much widespread fame just at the moment, but this is not to say that they are not very good. In fact I would say that the band and their music are actually really quite good with their playing, song writing, and clever arrangements, and I really would urge everybody to give them a listen.
So in summary I would have to say that The Mouldy Lovers’ debut release Kakistocracy is a lovely little addition to my record collection. Is it a great EP? Not really. But I can see good things in the future for this band, and I will be keeping my ears open for mention of them in times to come.
I couldn’t find any clips from the EP Kakistocracy, but I did manage to find the wonderful little clip of the band busking in a Brisbane train station.
- Yonder Ruckus – The Mouldy Lovers (speckedit.wordpress.com)