Mitchell Museum – The Peters Port Memorial Service

Release Date 12/07/2010 (Electra French Records)

By Kristian Jackson

Mitchell Museum Pack Shot 3.jpegWith the Scottish music scene undergoing such a grand renaissance these last years, it’s almost guaranteed that any new buzz band emerging from the country is going to be worth keeping an eye on. On the first listen through, Mitchell Museum’s debut album The Peters Port Memorial Service lives up to this implied promise, proving to be an instantly enjoyable mixture of understated pop songs and the odd slow burn jam thrown in to mix things up a bit. Yet this sense of immediacy proves to be a misnomer. The more time you spend with this record, the more it reveals a hidden depth that wasn’t immediately apparent, and you slowly begin to realise just how special this band could be.

There’s a confidence on display here that manifests itself in a wonderful freedom of expression. Opener We Won 2nd Prize is a self deprecating mission statement, displaying an ear for a good tune along with the anthemic tendencies that make this record such a joy to listen to. In that mould, Take The Tongue Out is energetic screwball pop at its best, and Tiger Heartbeat contains more hooks in its three-and-a-half minute length than the average band manages on an entire LP. Elsewhere, tracks like No. 3 and Cut Lantern offer plentiful evidence that they can comfortably tackle the quieter, more thoughtful melodies too.

Indeed, the standard of songwriting is so consistent that it becomes difficult to pick any standouts; it’s a shame the art of the mixtape has all but died out, because Mitchell Museum have produced thirteen tracks readymade to soundtrack blossoming romances between indie boys and girls. As it is, they’ll have to make do with the critical acclaim and international recognition that is no doubt coming their way.

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