Published Oct 14, 2015All Odds End drifts in breezily with swirling guitar, touching on themes like ambitious (and abandoned) pursuits, futile romances, running away and returning again. The Mantles' latest record is a fond reconciliation with the trials of youth.
These themes ignite album highlight "Hate to See You Go": "Even if you ever get there, back home," croons vocalist Michael Olivares above brash strokes, "you'd probably feel useless and reckless." With equal melodrama and youthful decadence, "Time To Come Away" posits that "Love could have saved the world, she could have shown you how... that's all over now." This painful musing is uttered with nonchalance and juxtaposed with an upbeat tempo, suggesting that any regrets have been reconciled. All Odds End endures a string of similar sentiments, allowing the listener to revel in juvenile matters before being freed at the record's end.
Sonically, too, All Odds End waxes nostalgic: the easy, upbeat jangle and endearingly off-kilter vocals of tracks such as "Lay It Down," "Lately" and "Undelivered" recall tunes from '60s pop purveyors like the Byrds or the Kinks. This is true of the Mantles' full discography, but their latest release is more than a mere reiteration of their sound. Besides being their most polished piece to date, All Odds End's vivid soundscapes, eclectic backbeats and soaring guitar evoke, better than ever, their youthful fervency. (Slumberland)