Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part of our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Today’s song, selected by Afternoon Show host Kevin Cole, is “Reason’s Run” by The Mantles from the 2013 album Long Enough to Leave on Slumberland Records.
Among the new releases today is the latest from The Mantles, Long Enough to Leave, a tight yet jangly, garage-pop record. If you were to pass the members of this four-piece on the street, you might not turn your head, but when they take the stage, your eyes and ears will assuredly remain focused. The band’s music does not demand anything from its audience – it is not loud, it is not angry, it is not brutal in any way – yet the listener can’t help but want more of it. The band’s sound is familiar yet unlike what you’d normally find boiling up in the Bay Area. Perhaps a closer analog is early 80’s sound of New Zealand (Flying Nun Records, The Bats, The Clean, etc.) or their fellow janglers among LA’s Paisley Underground.
Today’s featured song, the 2-minute and 21-second pop hit “Reason’s Run”, is a head-bobbing composition that also recalls the early rock and roll of the 50’s, complete with tambourine and la-la-la’s that Buddy Holly himself would approve of. The song is seemingly effortlessly composed with an unassuming guitar riff that sticks like bubble-gum covered in masking tape in your mind. “Reason’s Run” is traditional in the sense that it is short, guitar-centric and dreamy in its chorus, but modern in its full low-end, idie-produced glory.
The Mantles are fresh off their June 14th show at San Francisco’s Rickshaw, and their next gig is a daytime album release, a self-described “rager”, at Oakland’s White Horse Bar. Hopefully, today’s release of Long Enough to Leave will bring them up to the Pacific Northwest. Until more dates are announced, keep checking the band’s Facebook and Tumblr pages. For now, here’s “Disappearing Act” from their 2009 self-titled release: