Mansions – New Best Friends

Artist: Mansions
Album: New Best Friends
Genre: Indie Rock
Label: Doghouse

1. I Told a Lie
2. Talk Talk Talk
3. Por Favor Is Spanish
4. Holidaze
5. Curacao Blue
6. Insulated
7. Take it Back
8. Gotta Be Alone
9. The Worst Part
10. Substitute Angel
11. Millions of Pieces
12. All Eyes on You

I’m going to go out on a ridiculous limb here and say that Mansions could very well become the next Bright Eyes? …Wow, I can already feel the indie kids and Oberst followers writing their angry comments to this post, but after hearing New Best Friends, the new release from Mansions, I think they may just agree. there is a very raw/ growing up, but still mature/rock with a heart feel to it that fits only into the same category as Fevers and Mirrors.

Following a dreary introduction, Mansions, aka, Christopher Browder, flexes some musical muscle with the electrifying, “Talk Talk Talk.” there’s a 90’s alternative feel to the lyrics that makes you feel like you could hear it on your morning commute to work via the radio, but it’s just so raw it’ll most likely not find radio waves. However, the young mind of Browder really hit’s a high mark early on with my favorite track, “Por Favor.” If this track doesn’t bleed Bright Eyes, I don’t know what does. Also, anyone who can make the line “all she wanted was to fuck his accent,” fit into a track without being ridiculous deserves some serious credit. Browder recorded all vocals and instruments himself and I think that really adds to the cohesive sound of everything. For instance, “Curacao Blue,” has a beautiful, yet simple accompaniment, but it just fits and flows so perfectly that you can tell it came from one place [Browder].

As the album moves along, I felt like I was reliving the ups and downs of Browder’s life and to be able to translate such emotion through music, even to a newcomer to your sound, is incredible. “Gotta Be Alone,” sounds like any pop punk song about youth, but the music is more Death Cab and Postal Service finally just mash up and have a child. “The Worst Part,” then gives us some very blunt thoughts about the “scene,” which makes you laugh as much as it makes sense. The reasoning and thought put into every line is incredible. Browder evokes the feeling of being used so clearly in, “Sub Angel,” that we believe it to be our lives. This is the soundtrack to modern youth and it’s not always pleasant, in fact it’s generally the opposite, but it’s honest and down to earth and most importantly, real.

As the near grunge crunch strumming of, “All Eyes on You,” beings to fade, we realize that the adventure of New Best Friends has come to an end. Sitting here, 9 listens later, I’m still completely flabbergasted by Browder’s level of skill and craftsmanship with each track. This does work as a soundtrack, but each song stands as well on it’s own as it does with the record. I can’t express enough how great this album is – buy it!

*Written By: James Shotwell*
Score: 9.5/10

James Shotwell
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One Response to “Mansions – New Best Friends”

  1. Rufor says:

    Super post, Need to mark it on Digg