Remember those heady days back in the late 90’s when Feeder were good? 'Just a Day', 'Buck Rogers', stuff like that? Well, if you miss those brilliant pop-rock crossover tracks then look no further than Mute Math, a New Orleans fourpiece who manage to combine the pop-rock of Feeder with the strength and musicianship of Biffy Clyro into their live shows.
Playing last night at Monto Water Rats, Mute Math were the last to go on for what was meant to be a three band evening. Opening were South Africans The Parlotones, who sound like Fall Out Boy but without quite as many crowd pleasers. Ticking just about every box for clichés, they provided some fun pop/emo/indie mixture, and should please legions of teenage girls around the UK with their eye-linered lead singer, elaborate stage costumes, and crazy shapes being thrown from lead singer Kahn Morbee.
Next were meant to be Envy Corps, however after setting up all of their equipment it became clear quickly that Brandon Darner, their guitarist and backing vocalist, was not well. After much pointing to his cheek and grimaces through their set-up, it became clear that he had a numb cheek, was completely unable to drink or talk, and thus it was left to Luke Pettipoole to apologise for their inability to play, mentioning that an ambulance was on its way. All a bit of a shame for this Londonista, who was looking forward to seeing Envy Corps and their mix of Death Cab For Cutie / Arcade Fire sounds. Londonist sends its sympathies to Luke and hope he gets better soon!
Finally were the stars of the evening Mute Math, who we must admit were a bit sceptical about. A crowd of mostly boozed-up 20-somethings (a few sporting Burberry baseball caps), and the stage crew duct-taping EVERYTHING down (yes, even the headphones to the drummer’s head) we couldn’t help but feel things were about to kick off, (and not in a good way) however were pleasantly surprised.
Whisking their way through a string of songs that sound like the lovechild of early Feeder and Biffy Clyro, they also showed that they have it in them to do an Arcade Fire with the main set culminating in drummer Darren King, lead vocalist Paul Meany and bassist Roy Mitchell-Cárdenas all demolishing the drum kit and creating one hell of a noise by placing drums all over the stage and on things and then plain and simply whacking with rhythm… yet somehow it worked. Encore was “Reset”, the one song that has a completely different sound – far more electro, like Moby and 65daysofstatic on a drunken night out together…
All held together by the marvellous Paul Meany, one of the best front-men in a band this small we’ve seen in a while. With him at the helm, Mute Math will be on the way to the top – and not quietly.