Mononegatives / Mystery Girl split EP
I gotta say, I’d seen this record in distros and always assumed based on the cover that it was some synthy Factory Records-worship by a lone band—MONONEGATIVES. Turns out this record does feature a synth…that’s maybe wielded in a less new wave-y manner than I was imagining, but also there’s a whole other band on here! MYSTERY GIRL is not the name of the record. Instead, they’re a punky power pop band out of Albany, NY, who kick things off with a couple tracks. “Loveline” starts as a somewhat ripping garage pop track that crashes into an odd cooing power pop chorus with really off-kilter harmonies. It caught me way off guard at first, but I came to appreciate its strangeness by the track’s end. For their other song, they slow down the BOYS’ “Tumble With Me” and turn it into some NEW YORK DOLLS-esque swagger rock. It’s a cool cover! London, Ontario’s MONONEGATIVES close things out with three tracks of synth-drenched, garage-y post-punk. A track like “Time Warp” even justifies my inkling about what this record would sound like—the bass line could have been plucked from an early NEW ORDER track. But overall these guys’ vibe is way heavier, and they come off sounding like a less gimmicky and more overtly post-punk SERVOTRON…or maybe a weedier A FRAMES. Either way, I’m into it!