Published Jan 25, 2017Round two of Mexican Summer's collaborative EP series is here, this time featuring Ariel Rosenberg (Ariel Pink) and Natalie Mering (Weyes Blood) for Myths 002 (the first was 2015's effort from Connan Mockasin and Devonté Hynes, aka Blood Orange).
On Myths 002, nothing is as it seems. "Tears on Fire" starts off delightfully enough, with precious and sweet tinkling guitar and Rosenberg's sung-spoken lyrics, until Mering suddenly belts "ALL OF MY TEARS ON FIRE!" and a flip is switched from bucolic to chaotic. Myths continues this way, never allowing the listener to fully settle into the sweetness as one waits for Mering's roar to reappear. As soon as Rosenberg hits a very Ariel Pink groove (that being goofy lyrics paired with disjointed melody), he's abruptly cut off and we're back to the beginning, fading out while Mering sings some wild vocals runs in the background. It's a wonderfully curious start to a diverse, dynamic EP.
"Daddy, Please Give a Little Time to Me" is a woozy synth blip that unsettles more than anything else. Lyrics include "Won't you please explain these things to me? / I need you, daddy," and there's no knowing whether or not she's referring to her actual father in a supremely childish way, or her lover (not that there's anything wrong with that, but in this context, it's a little off-putting). The eagerness with which Mering asks, "Would you have time tonight?" just doesn't feel right, though. This tune doesn't feel mischievous — it simply feels wrong.
"Morning After" has Mering's ethereal voice sensually singing "Here it comes, a cure for the night / I've been waiting to let you inside /You have followed the moon to my sea ever since you touched me / I can't sleep from the memory." It's a beautiful recording on which you can feel the crispness and velvety nature of Mering's voice, truly embodying the cosmic folk that she performs so well. It's dark and hypnotic, almost medieval-feeling, with no real structure — just a meandering plea from a lovelorn lady following her encounter with a vampire (Why not?).
"On Another Day" (a cover of the Sad Lovers and Giants' tune) features the distinct touch of Connan Mockasin and some help from MGMT's Andrew VanWyngarden, and sounds like a bootleg from a live 1988 performance — which is a good thing. Rosenberg and Mering should sing together more often; with him hitting the highs while she covers the lows, it's a real treat, a little morose and a little moody.
Myths 002 certainly delivers in terms of a successful, collaborative and twisted effort between two rather different artists, and may they find themselves recording together again in the future. Just no more songs about daddy. Please. (Mexican Summer)