Sister 9 Recordings
Perhaps the most charming feature of turbulent noise-makers Mouses is their tongue-in-cheek namesake. Despite a swift transition from meeker venues to the mighty BBC Introducing stage at this year’s Reading/Leeds festival, the group continue to present a more than formidable force in the local music scene: as this, their electrifying debut, boldly confirms.
Girl – a gloriously noisy ode to youthful self-deprecation – snaps the album into animation with twists of melodic fuzz, showcasing the oddly satisfying synchronicity of the two musicians. Progressing jaggedly into the shoegazing Bloodlust and aggressively canorous Hollywood, Ste Bargett shines as a vocalist, possessing all the excitable mania of Feargal Sharkey after a few tinnies. Parallel to this sits (in the loosest form of the word) hurricane personified Nathan Duff, whose frenzied percussive bravado on Green transforms the relatively reserved drummer into a Moon-like god.
Unsurprisingly, anything penned by the unstoppable pair boasts its own unmistakable reverberations of hard-wearing garage, whilst each lyric spat or spun lends the album an edge of ponderous wit that you’d be hard-pushed to find anywhere else. The droll subject matter of Psycho is one such example of lyrical finery as, deep beneath the murk of a genial lo-fi din, some of the best Billingham-born lines since Paul Smith’s By The Monument are found.
Overall, this is a debut can be described as nothing less than wholly exhilarating: deep, warm, and barely pausing for breath, Mouses have cemented their well-earned stance within every single alternative playlist from now until the end of time.
Did anyone expect anything less?