Sunday, October 28th, 2007
CONTEST – Mum @ The Opera House – November 2, 2007
The last I heard from Iceland’s Mum was their 2002 release Finally We Are No One which, while beguiling in its unique tinkertoy electronica way, didn’t compel me to keep up with their subsequent releases, especially with the departures of both Valtysdottir twins who had been both the voices and faces of the band as I knew them.
So it’s a bit of a surprise that their latest release, Go Go Smear The Poison Ivy, doesn’t sound like the completely different band that I’d expected it to. Which makes sense, I guess, since the sisters were only half of the band and the remaining members were the ones responsible for the musical end of things, now supported by an expanded cast of vocalists and merrymakers. And so their distinctive blend of glitchy synths and sing-song melodica and glockenspiel melodies persists, buoyed by strings and horns a richer, more organic sweep and an overall, sunshiney, teddy bear picnic giddiness.
While it’s commendable that Mum has not only survived the loss of what had essentially been their identity and turned out a new statement of intent with Poison Ivy, it tries a bit too hard to distance itself from the the introverted under-the-covers intimacy of its previous incarnation and loses some of the mystery and magic that made No One special. Maybe on the next record, they could let the clouds gather a bit again and head indoors.
Mum are at the Opera House this Friday night and courtesy of Fat Cat Records, I’ve got two pairs of passes to give away to the show. To enter, send me an email to contests AT chromewaves.net with “Mum’s the word” in the subject line and your full name in the body. Contest will close at midnight, October 30 (Tuesday night).
MP3: Mum – “Dancing Behind My Eyelids”
MP3: Mum – “They Made Frogs Smoke ‘Til They Exploded”
Video: Mum – “Rhubarbidoo” (YouTube)
Video: Mum – “They Made Frogs Smoke ‘Til They Exploded” (YouTube)