Thursday, January 9, 2020

Mansion Harlots

If you've paid attention for the last ten years, you'd recall a few recurring complaints, with the two most recurring being "there are no songs on this record" and "no one makes records anymore." The new release from the U.K.'s Mansion Harlots has shut me up for the time being. Released just in the nick of time for 2019, which in my book might as well be 2020, "All Around A Fairground" is a collection of strong songs, even stronger melodies and big time record making. It is pop music at its finest.

A tip of the hat to Don over at the invaluable IDHAS for his wonderful write up of this record, otherwise the Mansion Harlots would have never crossed my radar. I will steal one of his lines here, as it nails my exact feelings about "All Around A Fairground"- "What does shout out here is the sheer melodic quality of the record." Boy does it ever! Rather than label the Mansion Harlots as one kind of band, I'll say this, each song evokes the very best qualities of all the music I have been loving for years, from the early days of The Beatles, to the great AM radio pop hits by The Four Seasons and The Turtles, to the crunchy pop of the Raspberries and Cheap Trick to the big vocals of Queen. I had so much fun with this record, I played it twice and then chose some random tracks just to convince myself that this was the real thing. Trust me. It is.

If there is one downside to "All Around A Fairground" it is its length. At just under an hour, it could use a bit of trimming, say somewhere right in the middle. Leave them wanting more, I always say. Nothing like a powerful 35 minute record. But even at just over a week into the new year, I anticipate this record showing up on December's faves of the year for the three songs I've shared alone. And there's more where these came from.

You can get it here.


Bill said...

Wow, this sounds really good. A nice start to the new year!

ken49 said...

Superb! Listened to them today on Spotify. It's the first time in a long time that I got the feeling like the 1st time I heard Raspberries' Side 3 or Cheap Trick's 1st. You're right it could have been a little shorter but at the same time they are jam packed with multiple hooks. The two albums above time in at 35 min. and 40 min. respectively.

Dr Wu said...

Thank you for this. Many listens so far. Many more to follow.

Paul said...

Nice find. The first track didn't grab me, but the others did. Have you listened to Young Guv - GUV I?

Anonymous said...

Hello, please remain seated,

Wow, what a great album! Just finished listening and you're right. Brilliant!


Robin said...

Baz Francis! His other band Magic Eight Ball was pretty good too. Love this album for the reasons you state, I also wish it was just a bit shorter in length. Whenever I see more than 10 or 11 songs... I usually groan a bit. ;) But it's lovely and provided some sweet end of year into the new year listening, in fact it was my NYE listen the year. My favorite song on it is Cold English Summer right now.


buzzbabyjesus said...

Best new thing I've heard since the Lemon Twigs "Go To School". And a similarly ugly drawing on the cover, undercutting how good the sound is.