mind spiders Prosthesis (LP, £20.75)label: Dirtnap Records
Based in Ft. Worth, TX, Mark Ryan’s shadowy, shape-shifting “solo” band Mind Spiders launched soon after his last project, the beloved and highly influential Marked Men, went on indefinite hiatus at the beginning of 2009. On earliest recordings, Ryan played everything except drums on some tracks, but the Mind Spiders lineup has continually evolved, with its founder remaining the sole songwriter and constant member. On Prosthesis, the band’s fourth album in five years, the lineup is Ryan (Radioactivity, High Tension Wires, etc.), Daniel Fried (Bad Sports, Radioactivity, Video, High Tension Wires, etc.), Mike Throneberry (Marked Men) and Peter Salisbury (Baptist Generals / Sub Pop Records). While each Mind Spiders album has been different from the one before, Prosthesis is less of a stylistic departure from 2013’s Inhumanistic than from previous work. The album clocks in at a brief eight tracks; however, the songs run a little longer than normal, really giving the individual pieces room to breathe and grow. The first Mind Spiders album to be recorded at Ryan’s and Jeff Burke’s (Radioactivity, Marked Men) new Cool Devices studio in Ft. Worth, Prosthesis is easily their best, fullest sounding effort yet! Keyboard and guitar blend seamlessly into ominous yet catchy dark pop explorations that incorporate post-punk, bedroom pop, krautrock and tons of obscure references along the way. Plans for the band include an appearance at Dirtnap Records’ 2016 SXSW showcase, a video for the track “Cold,” and touring later in the year. By then, Ryan will be ready to record another album!
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