Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Listen: Mothers - "BLAME KIT"

photo by Tonje Thilesen
Since the release of their debut album When You Walk A Long Distance You Are Tired as well as their subsequent move from Athens, Georgia to Philadelphia, I've wondered what is next for Mothers, the project of singer/songwriter Kristine Leschper. The answer is given in "BLAME KIT", the first single from the quartet's forthcoming sophomore record and ANTI debut Render Another Ugly Method. I've always considering Mothers at their most experimental and technically complex to be reminiscent of  fellow Philly rockers Palm (unsurprisingly they've toured together) and "BLAME KIT" sees Mothers diving deeper into their most innovative impulses. While When You Walk A Long Distance You Are Tired was a delicate tightrope walk between Leschper's crystalline vocals and emotive narratives with the band's intricately layer math pop, "BLAME KIT" sees the band as a unit shift into overdrive: Leschper's usually unadorned vocals arrive through a thin layer of effects and momentarily suspending her languorous delivery in favor of a swifter. But Mothers are a band that revels in dynamic options and the initial fervor subsides for a syrupy slow-down.

Though on their debut, Leschper sang freely of emotional reckonings both within herself and directed towards others, a smaller thread throughout (even offered in opening track "Too Small For Eyes") is Leschper's interest in the body both as a concept and a vessel for ideas. "BLAME KIT" and Render Another Ugly Method expands that into a full on thesis and in its more sedate second half "BLAME KIT" finds Leschper cooing "Not the first time I've watched her body expand a human times it's size to contain everything". Leschper treats the body as a Universe unto itself, containing multitudes that render things outside of it rather inconsequential and yet "BLAME KIT" sees Leschper seeking to establish the idea of a societal measure of things like guilt and blame. This juxtaposition of radically different ideas is nothing new for Leschper and Mothers.

Mothers' itself is a band of composed of conflicting ideas and methods - the solo stylings of Leschper not entirely excised from its DNA, the band balances moments of collaboration and artistic isolation. The intensity of many of Mothers' prog-reminiscent breakdowns often existing without Leschper's vocals. "BLAME KIT" and Render Another Ugly Method essentially seek to expand and collapse distinctive dissonances.   

Mothers' sophomore full length album Render Another Ugly Method will be out September 7th on ANTI-, you can pre-order it now. The band will be touring pretty extensively this Summer opening for Japanese Breakfast and Lucy Dacus before embarking on a headlining tour this Fall. You can check dates on Mothers' official website here.

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