Mr. Cricket - EP

Owain Paciuszko 22/10/2009

Rating: 4/5

With the vocals that move between angsty sneers to falsetto hollers it's very clear that there's a huge Weezer influence at work here on opening salvo Stazy, and it's curiously mixed up with Math rock instrumentation that at times sound like the wrong vocals have been put on top of the wrong backing. Once the vocals disperse the track finds a nice groove and drifts languidly towards a mellow post-rock ending that switches into Prosa Wein suddenly. This second track continues the falsetto vocal delivery and has a Muppet-like endearing quality at times, but occasionally grates; after the first chorus though there's a bit more spit to the vocals that works well and the skittering instrumentation suits the ramshackle delivery.

Too Little Sleep finds their sound crystalizing further with some truly wonderful spacey synths lingering in amongst the twinkling guitar lines, scuzzy bass and rolls of drums. Meanwhile Your Voice Is Leaving Home has a nonchalant sound, right down to the lyrics 'La la laaa, la la laaa', and like much of their output it toys with timing and changes tempo whenever it fancies creating a sort of stoner-fog of music that captures a wonky memory of an intoxicated evening. Lurching from fuzzy headed moments to fast-paced, near menacing guitar meltdowns, it's experimental without becoming unlistenable.

Yolanda finds the group in more of the same territory, though vocally things have more of a 'mob' sound and musically things begin to resemble Southpaw Grammar-era Morrissey. Closing track Lithorians back and forths the vocals well, 'Hey, how you doing?' 'Not that bad.' goes one nice wry exchange, and the track motors towards its finale with drive and finality.

Mr. Cricket have taken their indie pop influences and peppered them with both an intriguing and distancing dose of experimentalism, some times it works and at others it jars (perhaps intentionally?). Regardless, they make a noise that is far more interesting than most new bands out there and for a debut EP this promises a great deal.