Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Album Review: The Mantles - Long Enough To Leave

The Mantles are happy where they’re at. The San Francisco band makes music when it wants and how it wants. As such, they waited 4 years to release their sophomore record, Long Enough To Leave.

On Long Enough To Leave dreamy California pop mixes with 90s college rock, but it isn't using either as a crutch. The Mantles aren’t nostalgic for the past and their songs feel modern compared to other bands that lean on these styles.

Certain songs lean more in one direction than the other. “Bad Design” and “Reason’s Run” are guitar-driven and light on melody while “Raspberry Thighs” and “Marbled Birds” sway with a wash of colors.

Throughout Long Enough To Leave, the vocals sound distant, mixed in line with the other instruments. They’re open with a slight echo, like they were recorded in large empty room or just down the hall. It makes the album approachable and The Mantles sound like a friendly local band playing the dive two blocks away.

As refreshing as The Mantles easy-going approach to their music is, it does limit the album. While all of the songs are okay to very good, none crosses into greatness. The album lacks an ardor that would compel people to listen repeatedly.

Long Enough To Leave is a comfy, enjoyable record, but one that ultimately fails to capture the listener’s attention for long.

Long Enough To Leave is out now on Slumberland Records.

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