I consider myself to be in the loop most of the time as far as music is concerned, but when I received this record for review, I hadn’t even heard of this duo. Apparently I was not the only one. Their first record was listed in the New York Times as one of the best records you probably didn’t hear in 2000.
Of course, here it is six years later and well… I guess I really had no excuse. But after listening to this forth release from the Mates of State, I was pleasantly surprised.
The husband/wife team made up of Kori Gardner (organ, vocals) and Jason Hammel (drums, vocals) has successfully achieved a sound that resonates with a fullness of a full studio band through layering vocals and harmonies between the organ and drums. Immediately I was grabbed by the day-dreamy qualities and the poppy hooks of the first track, “Think Long.” Anthems such as “Beautiful Dreamer,” “For the Actor,” and “So Many Ways” show off their skills at creating an enchanting playground of tune.
With its delicate and catchy lyrics backed with joyful piano melodies, Bring It Back made me feel like I was a little girl again; playing hopscotch, jumping rope, and wearing my favorite heart shaped locket.
Mates of State are currently living the dream of many musicians, having quit their day jobs in support of touring and making a name for themselves. We hope to have them here in Denver soon.