Released: April 2014
This week The Mispers release their self-titled debut EP and thanks in part to frontman Jack Balfour Scott’s quivering vocals, and the infectiousness of the first two tracks, it’s already crushed many of 2014’s indie-rock offerings. The Mispers invite the listener into the band’s own little world and you’re likely to never want to leave.
Leading track, Brother, is instantly likable from the first note, as Hannah Van Den Brul’s endearing violin hooks you in and the steady guitar riff keeps your ears captive. There’s no mucking around with sluggish intros here – Brother develops rapidly into a delicious cacophony of instruments and sounds, knotting it all together to create something bold and sure of itself. Just as you think you’ve got the song sussed, it takes a different direction, delivering something new upon each listen. This is probably the key to Brother’s appeal – it refuses to let you become bored.
Not quite as catchy from the onset, Trading Cards takes a gentler but equally dynamic approach. Allowing you to take a breather after all the knee twitching and shoulder bopping that occurred during Brother, the EP’s second track is easy on the ears. The soft start builds gradually, leading up to the minute mark where it really takes off and turns into a song that’s worthy of airplay on national radio. Use Trading Cards as the soundtrack to an offbeat indie film and it would be absolutely perfect.
Coasts and Emilie complement the first two tracks by continuing to layer instruments and vocals, building atmosphere and momentum as they progress. When you listen to these songs it’s easy to see why the band have sold out every one of their London gigs – there’s just this never ending energy to The Mispers’ music. They never lag or sound monotonous and that’s a rarity in popular music.
At just four songs, the EP is a mere taste of what The Mispers are capable of, but four songs of this calibre is much better than a full-length album of mediocrity. The Mispers are an exciting band to behold. They’re still under the radar of many mainstream listeners and perhaps that’s half the charm. You want to tell your friends about them but you also want to keep them to yourself, such is the internal struggle of a music lover. Still, if this is any indication of what The Mispers have up their sleeve, they’re not likely to fly under the radar for very long.