It’s early to say, but if any album in 2015 will make you move, it’s probably Our Own House by MisterWives. This rookie band has stomped on the scene with big bass lines and a loud sound that’s fun to groove to. MisterWives started gaining attention in early 2014 with their first EP. “Reflections” and the title track of their new album, “Our Own House,” were released as singles for their first album and showcased a fresh sound.
MisterWives are best at their loudest. Lead singer Mandy Lee sings in a pitch just higher than Florence Welch (of Florence and the Machine) and with a punch that Pink wishes she still had. “Reflections,” starts slow and suspended before picking up a steady beat and breaking into a powerful pop sound. It’s a natural trajectory that doesn’t feel rushed. High guitar notes complement Lee as she shows off her range in a chorus that makes you want to give the notes a shot.
MisterWives stick to a popular pop music formula, but they add plenty of their own flair. Besides Lee’s belting voice, brass horns make the title track one of the best on the album. Horns appear again on “Best I Can Do” and “Not Your Way,” two more fantastic songs. The final verse of the latter slows down in a move that recalls the famous “I’ve got soul but I’m not a soldier!” sing-along from the Killers’ “All These Things I’ve Done.” There’s an electronic element, too, but it’s paired so well with instruments that it’s hard to classify this new band’s sound—in the best possible way.
When MisterWives reaches outside that formula, they get mixed results. “Coffins” is a successful somber tune that stays at the same measured volume throughout. It’s easier to hear Lee’s brilliant lyrics here, which is something that’s lost in the loud and exciting beat elsewhere. “Vagabond” tries to find some middle ground, but neither the chorus nor the verses really stand out like in the album’s other tracks.
In the end, MisterWives couldn’t have introduced themselves any better. They’re as catchy as any pop fan could hope, but they sound original enough for everyone to enjoy. Without a doubt, MisterWives will face high expectations from here on out. In the title track, Mandy Lee sings, “We built our own house, own house.” As long as they keep making music there, MisterwWives will have much more great music to come.