Mixtapes – [Album]

Friday, 21 June 2013

It's incredible how, in spite of the fact that nothing has really changed about the band's circumstances, Mixtapes sound like they're primed to explode and take over the world on Ordinary Silence. That the band is giving off that kind of energy might simply be because they worked hard and, after a series of successes (including the release of a well-received LP and five great EPs between 2010 and 2012 as well as really good tours with Masked Intruder, The Wonder Years and Make Do And Mend and appearances on Warped Tour) have reached a critical mass which guarantees that small stages just can't contain them anymore but, regardless of the reasoning, there's no doubt that this band's sound is loud enough now that it's destined to escape the underground. Ordinary Silence simply will not be contained and anyone who hears it will know that to be true.

Mixtapes don't take any time to warm up or settle into Ordinary Silence; from the moment that the Stratocaster/Telecaster torrent laid down by co-singers Maura Weaver and Ryan Rockwell to open “Bad Parts” hits listeners, they'll know what's coming; all of the music that the band released before this was a necessary preamble to show where Mixtapes were headed, and now they're there – confident and on a whole new level. The basic elements which won fans before are still here, but they're bigger, louder and ready to be the songs that everyone knows because they're playing in the background on the radio, in clothing stores, in passing cars, everywhere.

Mixtapes will immediately have listeners' undivided attention with “Bad Parts,” and they never let it go by throwing in a sudden slow number to take their breath they just keep driving hard. As consistent-in-tone as it is, it's never boring though – in fact, it's quite the opposite; listeners will find they're hooked and both looking for and reveling in snide-but-sweet sentiments like, “I never yell much, I'm not any better I just don't really care/ I've tried to make it up for years I swear” (from “C.C.S.”) and “I feel young, I feel restless/ I'm a fool, and I'm reckless/ But I'm poor and I'm happy at least most of the time/ And it's fine with me” (from “Happy And Poor”) because they're the sorts of things which just feel right and Weaver and Rockwell present and articulate them in a way which proves no one else ever did it quite right before them. Listeners will be able to feel it and that sort of connection is the exciting thing which will have listeners actively trying to inhabit each of the fourteen songs on Ordinary Silence. They'll want to live both in and through these songs.

By the time “Be The Speak That You Change About” rolls through and effortlessly inspires listeners to try and reshape the world in their image (lines like “And I don't think you made this for me anyways/ But I still came around to try to see/ I'm laughing at the conversations and the heresay/ I'd like to light a match and burn this industry” feel revolutionary in their potential), listeners who have grown sick of computer-produced pop pabulum will already be sold and really just waiting to start the record over so they can keep trying to absorb each and every word. They'll feel compelled to scribble those lyrics on T-shirts and in books and on desks and on buildings – they'll be inspired and filled up by them. It's really kind of incredible how hard those who hear Ordinary Silence will find they've fallen for it; the record is the culmination of three years' worth of work and the logical extension of the music Mixtapes have released in that time, but it's more than that too – it is the beginning of the new chapter in Mixtapes' career where they become stars.


Mixtapes – Ordinary Silence – "Bad Parts" – [mp3]
Mixtapes – Ordinary Silence – "C.C.S." – [mp3]

Further Reading:
Mixtapes – A Short Collection Of Short Songs[7'' review]


Ordinary Silence will be released on June 25, 2013 by No Sleep Records. Pre-order it here on Amazon .

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