Mull Historical Society

Loss

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    6
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Colin MacIntyre's debut album as Mull Historical Society is filled to the brim with doe-eyed heavenly melodies, whiny singing, and wacky lyrics, and it's catchy in the all the right ways. At the same time, the album suffers from a certain sameness, and there seems to be no off switch when it comes to MacIntyre's search for the perfect hook. Where one would expect a quiet change of pace, MacIntyre doesn't relent and simply piles on more and more exuberant instrumentation. Loss sounds like it was recorded by some illegitimate, hybrid amalgamation of Babybird, Electric Light Orchestra, the Divine Comedy, and Supertramp, all bands who are known more for their melodies and catchiness than their subtlety. When MacIntyre is firing on all cylinders, his music is immensely exhilarating. "Public Service Announcer" is certainly whiny, but MacIntyre punctuates his vocals with the melody to the point where the song becomes one harmonic beast. "Instead" is equally sublime in its pretty, all-over-map attack, as MacIntyre sings "hold on to loneliness" and a child's choir provides a delicate backdrop. That Loss is a bombastic ride is both its strongest selling point and its Achilles' heel. Colin MacIntyre is an extremely talented songwriter, and if Loss was just a bit more varied and about 20 minutes shorter, it would be a thing of excellence. As it stands, Mull Historical Society's debut is an interesting, occasionally brilliant dose of modern British psychedelic pop.

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