The New Mendicants - Into The Lime

by Dan Clay Rating:6 Release Date:2014-01-20

Fans of Norman Blake and, in turn, Teenage Fanclub will recognise Blake’s influence on his new Canadian band, The New Mendicants (feat Joe Pernice, Mike Belitksy and Blake). Good concept then – Nick Hornby was instrumental in their formation apparently – but has this Glaswegian gone mellow (doubt) or kept sparky (‘s dream)?

Well the likes of opener ‘Sarasota’ and the bouncy ‘Cruel Annette’ certainly show he hasn’t lost the songwriting flair, while the soaring chorus of the melodic ‘High on the Skyline’ - the best thing on the album – deserves a wider listen with its ‘Baby Lee’-like knack of getting in your head.

Elsewhere, though, the likes of ‘Follow You Down’ and ‘If You Only Knew Her’ feel like a band going through the motions and some of the sparse arrangements don't really help. Thankfully, the fuzzy rock of ‘Shouting Match’ and closer ‘Lifelike Hair’ show there’s still plenty of spark running through their musical veins.

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