The Mynabirds

The Mynabirds


Tonight’s line up features two fantastic solo artists, Sobi and Elle Mary, and the headlining indie band, The Mynabirds. This line-up is sure to get many people off the couch and into The Castle, but the fact that it is free, yes free, has just served to nearly double the headcount. This is a mid-week treat like no other.

Although tonight’s support acts are bewilderingly good, it would be amiss of me to not start this review with a few words about tonight’s headliners. They are based in Omaha, Nebraska and are create pop music that is straight to the point. Their new album Lovers Know, which incidentally opens with a killer track, is out tomorrow and has already been gaining rave reviews.

The woman behind The Mynabirds, Laura Burhenn, wrote the record while on an extensive tour through the US and South Africa. Tonight, she is here early and stands in the corner of The Castle, kindly greeting praising each support act as they step off the stage.

Tonight’s first act is Sobi, a mysteriously brilliant singer-songwriter who has somehow managed to stay off our normally intense Silent Radio radar. Her guitar is reminiscent of Lianne La Havas and her stream of consciousness lyrics are alike to Courtney Barnett. Not bad going.

As Sobi steps off stage, Elle Mary comes on. Any Manchester gig-goer will surely be aware of Elle’s endless talents, and tonight she shows why she has become such a hot name on the well-renowned Manchester gig circuit. Her lyrics are honest, her voice heart-wrending and her personality charming. If you don’t believe me, just read our interview with her.

Now though for the main act, The Mynabirds. As they come on stage, Laura Burnhenn’s immense stage appearance, makes itself apparent on ‘Grown’ and the last album’s title track ‘Generals.’ However, her new stuff seems to be a new level above the old, as it should be, and ‘Semantics’ soon hits the old songs out of the park. Its intelligent title is unbefitting of the easy pop at its core and it has a fantastic riff that really hits the spot.

Although the standard drops slightly with ‘Body of Work’, it is quickly resolved by new track ‘Orion’. It is a beguiling piece of pop that causes tonight’s thrifty audience to fall into silence. At times, Laura’s voice wilts and occasionally gets lost in the music. But that is a small criticism for what is largely a brilliant performance.

The Mynabirds end tonight on a high with their best songs to date ‘All My Heart’ and ‘Wildfire.’ Anyone who gives their album a chance on Spotify or whatever is bound to be instantly entranced by ‘All My Heart.’ It is a song about heartbreak, unsurprisingly, and is fronted by an irresistible drum beat. However, there is just one song that manages to outshine is brilliance. This song is ‘Wildfire’ and it is truly brilliant. The fan next to me may be a bit too enthusiastic about it, but it is a really good song that will probably end up on NPRs ‘Songs We Love’ 2015 list. It is an ecstatic ending and I’m sure that many fans here tonight would more than happily crack their wallet open for any future sightings of the Mynabirds. For now though, just buy their record (it’s just arrived at Piccadilly Records).

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Paddy Kinsella

Hi all, my name is Paddy and I have a love for everything from African music to indie to house (basically anything other than heavy metal). Gigging and listening to albums are genuinely the things I most value and love doing.