Ian DiMartino, John Gabaldon, Demi DiMartino and Adam Rifat are an indie rock group from Las Vegas called Mauve. Las Vegas is not one of those cities that seems to be the least likely to cultivate indie music. Portland, Brooklyn, Austin but Vegas.
The point I’m getting at is the band was a pleasant surprise. On their self-titled twelve-song album Mauve the band delivers a very respectable batch of songs that are in no way reinventing the wheel but are more often than not poppy songs that are reminiscent of ’90s indie artists like Pavement and Yo La Tengo.
The band gets going with “The Company” and I have to admit that I was a little worried with the initial guitar riff. It sounded a bit too much like mainstream “alternative” acts from the 90's. Luckily, the riff works much better with the whole band. The vocals are softly sung with plenty of emotion. It sounds great especially with repeated listens. The vocalist sings, “The silence drowned me out last time / No one likes to talk about it.”
If you enjoyed the first song you are in for a treat with the rest of the album. The band keeps it simple settling on a specific palette of tones and textures. The guitars have a little bit of crunch on them, the bass is clean and the drums sit well in the middle of the mix.
That's not to say the band can’t venture into interesting territory like on “The Pacific” where the chorus has a dreamy, atmospheric feel. “Amy (Knows Where To Take Me)” implements sparse piano on the instrumental section and “Neu” contains a repetitive groove that was hypnotic in a good way.
The band isn’t afraid to go deep either. “Lost & Found” is a eight-plus-minute song where the band isn’t afraid to explore and jam. As the album progresses there is a fine batch of songs; two of my favorite being “Love, Love Making” and “A New Hope.”
My only minor issue with this album is the length. Twelve songs that last about three minutes could have worked but these songs average around five minutes. It just felt a little long for the type of album this was which is a fun indie pop album.
I think ten songs may have made the experience a little more compact and possibly impactful if you are someone like me who prefers to listen to albums in sequential order. At the end of the day I still give this album two thumbs up. Great songs and delivery from a band that has great taste.
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