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AAA Music | 25 July 2024

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Mother Mother – O My Heart

| On 21, Jun 2010

Canadian indie-pop outfit Mother Mother may not initially be everyone’s kettle of fish. Their new single, ‘O My Heart’ features a lead vocal that can only be described as strange. A kind of helium yelp that manages to carry a tune. The only voice I have ever come across that is remotely like it is Alessandro Cortini of Modwheelmood. Slightly robotic yet ghostly backing vocals may also throw listeners at first. However, anyone who perseveres beyond the first twenty seconds will find that actually, it grows. A lot. The rhythm section (pulsating bass and almost mechanical drums) drives this track like a runaway train, which matches perfectly the neurotic lyrics and paranoid guitar, and the whole affair is incredibly tight, as if any rhythmic slips would be punished by death, and the result is you can’t help but move in time while listening. The twisting use of words and repetitive nature could have fallen, but thankfully it only adds to the air of surreal single-mindedness, aided by the constantly off-kilter yet still enjoyable harmonies. My only real gripe would be the slightly gratuitous la-la-la middle section, but given the masterful putting together of ingredients that shouldn’t work into something that does, it hardly matters.

‘Heart Heavy’, the b-side, is slightly more relaxed in approach, including syncopation and a much less anxious tone, and once again, the unbelievably nasal vocals are used to surprisingly good effect, laying bare the sarcasm and mockery within the lyrics. The use of an acoustic guitar and typically cute synth sounds in an anti-love song is also worthy of a smile. And bravo for being able to include an effective horn section outro.

Overall, a very enjoyable way to spend seven and a half minutes, featuring intelligent use of instruments and a welcome spark of originality in unashamed pop.

Author: Katie H-Halinski