Spies - Mystery Monster
Upon some scrounging around the Internet to learn more about Spies, one will find that the band really emphasizes that it just wants to have a good time playing music with friends. But these guys really need to give themselves more credit; there is a unified talent behind the jams that makes Mystery Monster worth praising. The album showcases raw, diverse songs with an open, earnest heart that represents devotion to indie music.
It is easy to really appreciate a band that can strut eclectic sounds, and Mystery Monster shows off a huge range of musical influences. Compare the opening track “More Than Me” to the subsequent “Comatose in DeLorean;” the former song has a friendly catchy beat that we may recognize in radio rock tunes, but the latter displays a strong ska influence on the bass, guitar, and drums. Then you've got “Sleep Better,” a pretty song accompanied by the lovely murmurs of a cello. Already, one can glean that this album is a complete surprise in sound one song after another.
What the album does lack every now and then is a lasting power that carries a listener forward with breeze. There are some attempts to maintain the momentum with which Spies starts its album. “Fist City Rockin” - a fitting title to embody the pounding instrumental piece on the album - picks up a pace that was somewhat lost after the slow and sleepy “On My Own.” Once again, the transition exemplifies the incredible range with which Spies approaches music, but my only wish is that that energy could be at its prime for every song from beginning to end.
The journey through Mystery Monster could have been a more dynamic one, but the musicality in Spies undoubtedly shines. This album is terrific because it clearly celebrates the camaraderie that is formed because of music and through music. Spies is a respectable indie-rock outfit that plays with unrestrained love for the expansive spectrum in music.
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