Genres: Rock / Fuzz Pop / Emo / Acoustic / Alternative / Indie / Garage / Lo-fi
Related artists: Good Driver, Animal City and Once More.
Country: Louisville, Kentucky USA
Years Active: 2007-present
Song: "Never Enuff"
Album: "Best Of The Bees"
Label(s): Sophomore Lounge / Clifton Motel / Onto Entertainment / Burning House Records
Doghouse Records / Cougar Child Tapes /
This post's artist is from the January 2014 Mix. This is track #10.
You can download the January 2014 Mix#1 right here.
For fans of: Stephen Brodsky, Nada Surf, Into It. Over It., Rocky Votolato, Harvey Danger,
Ben Kweller, Manchester Orchestra, Fences, Down With The Butterfly,
Marco Solo, Said Goner, John Vanderslice and By Divine Right.
The brainchild of Christopher Browder, MANSIONS have been rocking my world in a cute and awkward way since he (who I will now refer to as 'they') dropped 'New Best Friends' back in 2009. The music is definitely on the slower side, as it generally plods along at what just seems like the right pace for a MANSIONS song. This, of course, doesn't always hold true as there are some pretty thick and heavy tracks (for indie rock music) - especially on the new record, 'Doom Loop'. There's something about his voice that is like a drug. It doesn't wail or flail around with high notes and crazy melodies. He croons in a way that helps the listener really feel the sorrow/happiness/whatever he's trying to get across with his lyrics.
To run through the band's discography, the first EP and demo sessions saw acoustic ditties evolve into full-band songs. MANSIONS also released a bonus cd with the 'New Best Friends' album with around 40 tracks on it. These lofi songs are demo/alternate/remixes and are quite different yet still hold true to the foundation that was used to establish the fleshed-out versions on the proper full-length releases. The 'New Best Friends' LP captured the band at their most consistent, polished and accessible morose pop-rock. The sophomore full length 'Dig Up The Dead' was more of the same. It is still a great album, but I realized that the band needed to progress or they would stagnate. Just as I had hoped, MANSIONS made an unexpected turn (in my books) and went all dark fuzz-pop with their 2013 vinyl-only 'Doom Loop'. Although the album isn't my favourite, it grew on me in an almost unhealthy way. It isn't the most consistent - but it does have 4 of the strongest tracks the band has ever recorded. The inclusion of Robin on bass/effects also gives the band a much thicker sound. Although there are drawbacks (the 1 note held too long in "Falling Down" from 2-2:30 is really annoying, but it doesn't stop it from being the best song on the album), overall it really compliments what the band was going for.
Songs like "Caruaco Blue" are so soft and fragile I'm afraid to raise my voice in fear of the song getting spooked and disappearing completely. His voice doesn't rise above a whisper. Some songs are driving and heavy on the instrumentals with more voice behind the vocals, while others are like the previously mentioned acoustic/whisper songs. There's a lot in between, as well.
Let's talk about the lyrics. BEST FUCKING LYRICS. Just beautiful, sad, melancholy, catchy, quotable and deep as hell - all classic MANSIONS traits. Let's take a goddamn gander, shall we?
"Million of Pieces" = I wanna split you up in millions of pieces like grains of white sand on the shores of the beaches and write a song about each one. ... I used to spend my nights walking around town looking for trouble. Sometimes I'd find it and I'd fall to the ground, then I saw the sunrise. You saved me from breaking into millions of pieces - dance floors and beer bottles, meaningless kisses and I don't miss a single one.
"Holidaze" = I always sleep through holidays. Sitting by myself in inside a tiny room. Watching bad TV got nothing else to do. Drink till I get sick, start howling at the moon. Spending all my nights just missing you.
"Talk Talk Talk" = The first thing that you said to me was that your life is so interesting. So I followed it from week to week like a TV show. Everything you did was so idealized and enviable. The perfect life got so old so I turned my head. Yeah I turned my head because all you do is talk, talk, talk, all about yourself self self. And I wonder if anyone else sees through your smile. I wish you were the exception and not the rule, but sadly baby that's not true. Everyone acts just like you.
"Never Enuff" = I don't love you like I used to. When people talk I don't defend you. I tried so hard, I paid my dues, but it was never enough - I was never enough for you. (he's talking about god)
"Falling Down" = All tongue laid out like baseball cards on your bedroom floor, in your old backyard. ... Don't you start falling down, I don't want you dying in my sleep. I feel it all around, there's no safe place for you to be. This was without a doubt my rock anthem of 2013. So let's start with that one.
(2013) MANSIONS - "Falling Down" (from 'Doom Loop')
2008 - Mansions cdEP (download here)
2009 - New Best Friends 12"LP
2010 - Best Of The Bees digital audio compilation (stream/buy/download here)
2010 - New Best Friends + The EP Initiative 2xcd (download EP Initiative here)
2011 - Dig Up The Dead cd/12"LP
2011 - Fences Split 7" (download here)
2013 - Doom Loop 12"LP
(2008/2010) MANSIONS - "Never Enuff" (from 'The Best of Bees')
(2009) MANSIONS - "Millions of Pieces" (from 'New Best Friends')
(2011) MANSIONS - "Seven Years" (from 'Dig Up The Dead') acoustic/live video
MANSIONS out-of-print mp3 download / additional links