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Mumm-Ra - These Things Move in Threes

Mumm-Ra, These Things Move in Threes

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 4 out of 5

MUMM-RA are often credited with being indie eccentrics (especially since their name originates from the main villain of the 1980s cartoon, Thundercats).

But they’ve quickly emerged as one of the most exciting bands of the moment, having cut their teeth and even emerged from the shadow of bands such as The Automatic, The View and The Horrors while taking part in this year’s NME Awards Indie Rock Tour.

Recent single She’s Got You High provided further compelling proof of the band’s musical ability.

The track bore all the hallmarks of classic indie-rock material, beginning with a soft and deeply melodic guitar riff and then building emphatically towards a rousing chorus and some Beach Boys-style vocal layering. It’s an incredibly shimmering track that’s perfectly placed to become one of the summer’s breeziest anthems.

Debut album These Things Move in Threes is packed with similarly impressive tracks without conforming to any strict set of rules.

Opening salvo Now Or Never lulls you into a false sense of security, featuring James “Noo” New’s vocals lamenting the state of the world over an acoustic guitar being lazily strummed, before suddenly exploding to beautiful, epic life at about the 40-second point.

Coldplay would be proud of the rousing guitar riffs – but these Bexhill on Sea boys insist on stamping their own style over proceedings and their music instantly grabs you.

Former single Out of The Question follows complete with swirling keyboard melodies, a driving bassline and more euphoric vocals from New that really get your feet tapping in tandem with them.

And title track These Things Move In Threes confidently delivers more livewire electronics over the top of some really appealing guitar riffs. By the time you’ve reached She’s Got You High, Mumm-Ra should have you addicted.

Thereafter, the tunes are belted out in style and seldom miss a beat.

Another former single, Song B is an emphatic indie rocker built around crashing drums and some driving guitars – but it’s a thrilling head rush that could even teach the Arctic Monkeys a trick or two!

The tender side of the band resurfaces on Light Up This Room, when New’s vocals assume a sense of yearning and regret that’s perfectly suited to the wise lyrics. Instrumentally, it slow builds brilliantly, but never gives into the temptation to let go completely.

Starlight is another instant hit, a rousing blend of handclap beats, wailing guitars and sing-along choruses that really sweeps the listener along with it.

And then there’s epic final track Down, Down, Down, surely the album’s crowning achievement – a seven-minute opus that slow-builds moodily and magnificently to deliver one of the most mature and ambitious songs on the LP.

New’s vocals work well in tandem with the haunting piano chords that underscore proceedings, before the guitars eventually deliver some thrilling workouts of their own. It’s a magnificent end to a brilliant debut album and listeners should be totally smitten.

Download picks: Now Or Never, She’s Got You High, Down Down Down, Starlight, Out Of The Question, Light Up This Room

Track listing:

  1. Now or Never
  2. Out Of The Question
  3. These Things Move in Threes
  4. She’s Got You High
  5. Song B
  6. The Sick Deal
  7. Light Up this Room
  8. Starlight
  9. This is Easy
  10. What Would Steve Do?
  11. Down Down Down

  1. After reading this review I was compelled to go out and buy the album. I’m glad I did. Thanks guys for another accurate reflection of modern music at its best. Light Up This Room is my pick

    Simon    Jun 2    #
  2. For some reason - What Would Steve Do? which in my opinion is the album’s best track - has not been given a separate review. Surely this track should be one of the main reasons for buying the album?

    Otherwise - the review is completely sound and the album is absolutely brilliant.

    James Applewhite    Jun 6    #
  3. Having seen a couple of Mumm-Ra gigs over the last 6 months or so I was worried that the energy exuded on stage wouldn’t be recreated in the recordings. Wrong!! A well mastered and produced album that had me enthusiastically tapping away to all the tracks at first listen.
    From the slow and gentle ease into the opening Now Or Never, it’s not long before the tempo reaches an absorbing and very melodic cruise; with the odd moment of haunting soft vocal and accoustic guitar thrown in also.
    Out Of The Question is clearly the pinnacle – it has to be re-released as a single, surely. Commercial, a bit, maybe; but individual and creative also. I love it and so does the wife and young kids (very rare to have agreement on what to play in the car). I genuinely can’t believe that this can come from ones so young – well they all look about 16 anyway!!

    Steve    Jun 16    #