Album Reviews
Band: Mother Feather

Title: Constellation Baby

Label: Metal Blade Records

Well, Mother Feather seem to be the type of band that do what they want and 'balls ye, I say balls to the lot of ye' when it comes to their music, which for me, on this album, is a refreshing change from 'the norm' that gets played in this house most times.  Their 2016 debut self-titled album ruffled some feathers as it was released on Metal Blade Records, who are mostly known for dealing with heavier bands, but for their own reasons the label seemed to take to Ann Courtney, Elizabeth Carena, Chris Foley, Gunnar Olsen and Seth Ondracek and signed Mother Feather, and judging by this release, a good choice, chaps!

This New York band have a look of Siouxsie and The Banshees meets Strawberry Switchblade about them, which filters into their music at times, though they kick things off with 'Red Hot Metal', which heads down a more drum-ravaged, guitar-driven Garage / Punky route, sharply followed by the fuzzy, feedback corker 'Man, I Wish You Were Here', the Banshees-alike tribal drumming pulsating from the off, distorted vocals adding to the 80's feel this track has as it builds up to a sudden cut-off. Two cracking songs introducing us to the album, joined by the quite lightweight pop/punk 'ICU', and  'The Scream' era Siouxsie'd

'Snakebite', Courtney's vocals having that throw-away attitude we all loved back in those days, added harmonies by Carena a plus, as it is on the melodic, laid back vocal 'Desert Island', the dogs bollocks when it comes to guitar-power / pop, building to a crescendo of drums, guitar n' keys mid way through with the lushest of lush vocals that send the hairs on your arms up as if they've had a snifter of Viagra! Not to be outdone on the melodic touches.  'Constellation Baby' just begs to be listened to with earphones on and eyes closed to grasp the whole atmospheric mood that is generated as it starts, the droning keys and echoing vocals quite chilling and almost personal to the listener, gently building up to a mid tempo via the drums / guitar combo, yet still not losing any of that mood that is still radiating throughout the track ... aaahhh!

Now this is a first (I think?), but has the Star Wars robot C3PO ever been mentioned in a song before??  Well, he / it gets name-dropped in 'Totally Awesome', the snappy-style lyrics and drumming via Olsen quite brash and commanding as it is hypnotic at times, though the Gothic Rocker 'Shake Your Magic 8 Ball' tears you away from that feeling and pummels your ears with blasts of whiplash sounds and Foley's whining guitars.  Oh aye, cracking title for a song by the way!  'Supernatural' has a modern Rock vibe to it, tingling touches of keys filtering in when the riffage and power drumming edges out on the gentler side of the song, Courtney's vocals shifting from angelic to demanding when the song changes it's mood as it goes along, though she tends to stay focused on one style on the final track 'I Blow A Kiss', another must hear through earphones experience, as this will send you into euphoric ecstasy with the dreamy vocals mixed with Cocteau Twins-styled distorted, phased guitars, which seem happy enough to stay within the serene temperament that exudes this mind-bending song.

Myself and Mrs. B are and will always be Rock fans, though lately our choice of gigs and CDs / Vinyl may raise a few eyebrows amongst our friends, so when we listened to 'Constellation Baby' for the first time in the car, we were quite taken with what was coming out of the speakers, something totally out of the norm, especially for the Mrs and me.  I was hooked straight away, as it reminded me of my younger days at times, having that slightly quirky, attitude-ridden mix of styles that no-one else quite had, and could pull off as well. It's fair to say that if Mother Feather were ever to pass through these parts, I'd join the real 'motherfeathers' and show my appreciation for a snorter of an album, as my dear old Dad would've said!!

Review by: Robb Baldwin

 

Tracklisting:

1.  Red Hot Metal
2.  Man, I Wish You Were Here
3.  ICU
4.  Snakebite
5.  Desert Island
6.  Constellation Baby
7. Totally Awesome
8.  Shake Your Magic 8 Ball
9.  Supernatural
10.  I Blow A Kiss

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