NYC based proto-punk, garage-pop group, Mainland‘s self released The Shiner EP is set to drop on February 25, and the journey to get there has been an interesting one. In the wake of the untimely passing of his father, singer/guitarist Jordan Topf, pulled the money together for a van (keep a lookout for their ONLY.NY sticker on the back) and toured with the band, which they site as a creative turning point for their sound. When on tour in Austin they met Jim Eno (Spoon) which set the recording process in motion. The personal pain, troubles and stepping outside of one’s comfort zone may have been just the thing they needed to get where they are now, and the result is a happy one. The genuine heart and precision that was poured into this gem of an EP can be heard and felt.
Why We Like Them: While the band is based out of New York, they hold roots in Austin, where they recorded and in California, where the majority of the band members are from. The rock and roll influences from all three of these musically inclined cities / states are alive, well and kickin’ when it comes to Mainland’s sound and spirit.
Best Songs: The entire EP kicks ass with its infectious energy and movement and I’d highly recommend taking it out for a spin during your next road trip excursion or bedroom dance party. Opening track “Savant” really jump starts the EP with seamless surf guitar tones and driving beats. It manages to come across sounding simultaneously polished and raw, a perfect opening song to catch our attention. Need a little release in your life? Let it all go with a deep breath and “Shiner” — chunky bass, a teasing guitar solo and pop groove equals instant head bopper. The EP rounds out with the laidback, faintly Kinks-reminiscent, “Heaven” – leaving my musical palate clean and fresh, yet hungry for more.
Three Words To Describe Them: Crisp – Upbeat – Free Spirited
Upcoming / Recent Releases: Mainland is set to self-release The Shiner EP on February 25. These blazin’ 4 tracks were produced by Spoon’s Jim Eno at his own studio, Public Hi-Fi, in Austin. Click here for a free download via Soundcloud of opening track “Savant.”
Interesting Tidbit: Lead singer/guitarist Jordan Topf dishes on their dream lineup and favorite eats. Dream lineup — Iggy Pop, Jonathan Fire-Eater, Television, Guided By Voices and Chance the Rapper. Until that dream lineup is actualized live, I’d suggest making it a reality on your next playlist. Jordan also reveals the band are taco addicts and that Taco Deli in Austin, Texas is their jam (try the Migas tacos!). Per Jordan, “Dry rub BBQ is a new discovery as well. You’ve never had BBQ until you’ve been to Charlie’s Rendezvous in Memphis. It’s an ancient place almost like McSorley’s in New York, with all the 20th Century memorabilia. Before we played a show in Memphis, I got yelled at for asking about BBQ sauce on my ribs.” Nom!
Stay tuned as the band plans on playing in Los Angeles come summer time and something tells me they’ll fit right in.
Words: Emily Saex