Mulch | Canned Worms
Family Average: 4/7
There are only a few of those special words in the english language that sound like what they represent. Mulch is one of those words. Every time I say It I half expect a bit of debris to tumble out of my mouth, But enough about my poor dental hygiene this is a MUSIC BLOG! Mulch is the low-fi garage rock project from Mitchell Licata. Mitchell hails from the west. Pretty far west. They call it San Jose, California. The garages are big over there, thats why there is more garage rock per square mile. What did the family make of all of this?
Listen along on Their Bandcamp and read on to find out:
What do you get when you open a can of worms, well the answer of course is “Mulch” , ask a direct question and you get a direct answer. Mitchell is direct and straight to the point artist. Hey do you want some garage punk rock? well here you go. The opening tack “Worm” makes no pretense, its primitive fast driven, three chord rock and roll and it wants to date your daughter and if you don’t oblige, well that’s okay too. The vocals are youthful and although snide, the message is upbeat and down right cherry.
On the surface this EP appears to be basic simple stuff, but i get the feeling that it is more complex. If you have ever sang your favorite song along with the artist on the radio, you get a false sense of confidence, like hey man, being a rockstar is easy, they you try to sing without the radio and the experience is down right humbling. Mitchell is a talented musician, writer and producer, the problem is he makes it look effortless. It is easy to overlook this work but if you dig a little deeper, scrape the surface of the mulch you get very rich quality stuff.
Come let me show you my garage. You may have heard of this thing called garage music. What you did not know is that all the bands who make it have to exclusively perform in my garage. It is small, hot, and there are a few kick ass posters of trucks and stuff. All jokes aside though this is a pretty classic garage rock album. It lines up nicely next to acts like The Gorries, and Teengenerate. Fuzzed out guitar is strummed fast and furiously, while vocals are shouted out in kurt syllables. The songs are all short and sweet which coupled with the simplicity of each of the tunes really works in the albums favor.
Lyrics in the album touch on classic simple standbys. Things like I don’t like myself, and Why don’t you want to love me. I find it kind of funny how each of these popped up on the same album.
“Alright” slides in at track number three and does well to shake things up. It has a nice kind of swingy intro, then quickly launches back into the fast stuff again.
While the album is a pretty fun time I do find it to be a little sterile. I don’t know I like my garage to be messy. I want to hear chords get ripped out, people spilling beer, heavy breathing, and singers missing the microphone. I don’t really want to hear these things, but I want that kind of energy to come through. If I am being specific the drums were a weak point of the album. They are a bit too up tight.
Even still with this album by Mitchell I am pumped. They seem to have a firm grasp around the sound they are trying to achieve. They are welcome to come to my garage any day of the darn week, and throw mulch/worms all over.
Mind the grime, here comes a garage band. Messy, with a solid coarseness that feeds off some ragged guitar, it's a bit grating and a bit icky. Crude, jagged, rough, but still somehow considered. I could keep offering synonyms and adjectives but you get the idea. The short tracks keep to the pace and energy of the punk vibe, and the album as a whole is punchy. It's a definite attempt to follow in the footsteps of some of the old school punk and garage bands. And while they've got the stamina, it's a difficult feat to manifest that kind of raw spirit and verve. Nevertheless, Mulch has a certain energy and mood all its own that fits the bill. The penultimate track "Alright," was distinctly different in tone, somehow skewing a little more indie with the hooky chorus, and was the most palatable. Overall, the album took me back to being in high school, off brooding in the art room while I listened to the Ramones and tried to be alt and what not. A similar vibe here, I think.
Very raw and I love the energy. I like that they kind of switched things up on the 3rd track, slowing it down and making the track still punk/garage band, but also having mass appeal. I feel they are going for that garage band sound, however all too often that comes across as just throwing pasta at the wall. In that, let’s throw stuff out there and see what sticks. However as you continue to listen, they want you to think they are being live and in the moment but in fact, they know exactly what they are trying to do.
I do like the vibe and energy of this group. I could see this being something awesome to listen to on a long drive/plane/train ride. A sure way to liven up any trip. I think this group has so much to offer. They have left me wanting for more. I give this