MisterWives Fly High On Their 'Our Own House' Debut—Album Review

Electro-pop five-piece MisterWives are a Hurricane-drenched storm on their debut LP Our Own House. Bolstered by the infectiously-giddy Reflections lead sample, the 12-track project heaves and sighs with powerful rhythmic hooks, disco-fueled melodies and soulful and electrifying vocals. Mandy Lee Duffy is a sharp-shooting stylist whose quirky delivery is deliciously enticing, unwrapping each story with a subtlety and mysterious intrigue. Backed by four stunningly talented musicians—Will Hehir (bass), Etienne Bowler (drums), Marc Campbell (guitar) and Jesse Blum (keys/trumpet/accordion)—the band relishes in risk-taking, playfulness and house-party exuberance (and it just works).

An upheaval of rock, funk and power-pop sensibilities, this cavernous record echoes vibrantly through a musical landscape torn apart by deafening (and harrowing) Coffins slenderly distorted by Oceans of explosive temperament—a starburst-fueled Box Around the Sun (the eclectic standard is set by the pulsating opener and title track). Duffy attacks each lyric, lapping up an aggressive but resonate tone, on every chiseled entry. Best I Can Do is a ripened grape, delicately harvested on the summer vine, and the core of the entire luscious record, the anthem, if you will. Much like Vagabond and the mineshaft closer Queens, there's a complexity and wholesomeness that MisterWives have accomplished; leaving very few (if any) sour moments.

Florence + The Machine's and No Doubt's distinct influences are profoundly present, especially on the mid-tempo jangler No Need for Dreaming and the rhythmic shaker Imagination Infatuation. Fortunately, these particular cuts don't fall prey to the mid-album lull. Instead, they are fine testaments to the band's cool storytelling and earthy musicianship. They've managed to create a breathtaking journey, from start to finish, that guides the listener through a truly cathartic experience, chugging and tugging at the heartstrings but not lingering longer than necessary. If there's one rising alt-pop band that should be on everyone's radar in 2015, MisterWives are more than up to the otherwise daunting task.

Must-Listen Tracks: Hurricane, No Need for Dreaming, Coffins, Queens

Grade: 4.5/5

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