Mother Sun is a psychedelic pop band from British Columbia that does not mind taking a risk. They fearlessly tread the waters of variety in their music, and it is certainly a pleasure to examine their newest record “Sips”, and to get to know the band a bit on a personal level.
“Pizza For Days” is the mysteriously glitchy psychedelic-prog rock opener I have been waiting for since MGMT put out “Congratulations”. Glassy shards of guitar, distorted crashing drums, and stinging starry sky synths compliment each other to create a kaleidoscopic cacophony of psychedelic noise soup. Tempo feels change in what will become a recurring theme, and some dreamy composed group melody features in the latter half of the song.
“Lemonade” is the disco drip I want to sip. The softly doubled vocals provide the sugar, the bent synths provide the tart, and the whole thing rests on a bed of icy rhythm. The lemonade dances between full time disco and a slightly “Tame Impala” adjacent half time feel, and is accented by a red and white striped plastic straw of a guitar solo.
“Sucralose” begins with some Rhodes sounds that are bent just far enough, with chunky drums underneath a heavily chorus or phaser laden vocal. Accented by some light horns on the high end, the song is flush with a plethora of interestingly quirky sounds soaked in a cavern of reverb.
“Watching Movies” deals with some of the most inside the box sounds thus far. The box however is probably wrapped in neon colored paisley wrapping paper and topped off with a bow of indescribable shape. The track features some bright and twinkly piano sweetened by strings and horns, with a voice that is reminiscent of Brian Wilson and Wayne Coyne’s lovechild. The vocalist does not make a perfect product of every single note, but he Lao has absolutely no reason to do so. To be this far out on the edge of known music is inherently risky, and the risk pays off in dividends here.
“Wild Vines” carries itself in the same way as a drunken golf cart session with a mischievous friend. The chorus features of vaguely SNES sounding synths, and shows both dynamic range and accurate pitch in a difficult vocal performance.
“Tip of the Iceberg” provides a light and soft distraction from the flurry of color that came before. The peak of the song features an extremely hazy and layered overlook of an interesting soundscape. The vocals are dug into the mix at this point, but at this point that is like complaining about being too deep into a good dream.
The band then rockets into “Sea Salt” which evokes a sense of old and new with an uptempo Steely Dan feel, with all the retro inspired sounds of your favorite Fleetwood Mac Demarco essentials. The track provides yet another enjoyable and uniquely distinct mood for the record.
“Happy Medium” is the odd man out on this record in more ways than one. Of all the songs, it features the most simplicity, the most traditional sounds, and the most mainstream qualities. Featuring a wide array of instruments, the track blends together string parts and intro uses some woodwinds. Ultimately I feel the song is equally unique and a worthy offering toward the album, and also almost takes the shape of an old time film credit score for something like a Bond film. All in all, the track adds to the process rather than detracting.
“Sips” is a genuinely good and unique album that should be heard by all fans of psychedelic rock everywhere! Each song encompasses its own journey and thought process. We at Evil Bubble will watch closely the output of Mother Sun henceforth, and will award them seventy squillion jazznotes for their hard work and bravery toward this album. Check this record out on streaming and give the band a follow on social media! Before you rush off into the night friends, join us as we get to know this band just a little bit.
photo by Felix Fung
EB: Can you tell me a bit about the band’s background?
MS: Mother Sun is a Kamloops-based four-piece psych band who recently received their second full length album ‘SIPS’ on July 10th, 2020. “We are four curious sonic adventurers who create dream pop that filters odd thoughts into warm and colourful music. Lyrically our songs explore mental health, surreal societal observations and hopefully stimulate previously unconsidered thoughts. We record a lot ourselves and have recently started a small label and recording studio called Divine Bovine Records as a vehicle for recording and releasing our records as well as other music we love in Kamloops and beyond. Mother Sun represents the old school idea of a band; a tight live band focused on the idea of each member serving the song, listening and reacting to what the others are doing. This combined with each of our eclectic music tastes results in uniquely modern, weird, and beautiful songs.”
EB: The band has such a diverse sound, I have to ask about the influences of the members.
MS: We are constantly sharing music amongst ourselves. Our Taste and influences are morphing and evolving as we hear new things. Lots of Sergio Mendes, Herbie Hancock, Mild High Club, Tyler the Creator, Ghost Funk Orchestra, Bent Arcana, and a heap of psych rock. This list could go on forever, so that’s to say a few. Jared Wilman (drums) and Alex Ward (bass & keys) are always lurking in the Jazz archives.
EB: What is the future looking like for the group?
MS: There are a few projects we have been working on since the pandemic hit. We are working with Felix Fung of Little Red Sounds again on a new record, so we going to Vancouver whenever we can do that safely. There is also a few home brew records we have bubbling up. Definitely prepping to get as much output as we can in 2021.
special thanks to Mother Sun! stay evil friends...