I love pop, from the sticky sweet and slightly hollow major label productions to the feisty indie tunes that now and then creep onto the dancefloor, pop is important and I am always a little giddy whenever I hear an artist that has the potential to be wildly successful, Gotye and Sia-style. So, discovering MS MR through the ingenious playlist of John Richards down at KEXP, was pretty awesome. Think of a mixture of the early Florence and the Machine and the present Rihanna: dark, melancholic, opulent pop songs that feel like they could bond perfectly with soul, dance and rock.
MS MR are Lizzy Plapinger and Max Hershenow. They follow the traditional female/male-pop-duo a la La Roux, she provides the vocals and probably the lyrics and he does the producing stuff. Ok, so MS MR are not really the underground band I made them out to be, they are signed to Columbia Records, well Iamsound-Records to be precise who – quelle surprise – also feature Florence and the Machine (oh hi there, nice to see you again). Nevermind that though, their present album “Secondhand Rapture” is a solid pop-record and features some excellent songs and if they stay on the darker realms of pop and concentrate more on the 90s urban sounds of songs like “Hurricane” (which is fantastic), they could really be a strong contender to break into the Top 40 (that’s good, guys and gals, we want more intelligent pop in there).
They also do the kind of music that works great late at night when you’re just coming from a party but are not yet tired enough to go to bed, so you cruise through the city to breathe in the toxic fumes and the beautiful atmosphere of hundreds of people going to and coming from clubs, bars, friends, house-parties and dates and work and whatever else people are drawn to during the late hours of the weekend. And why do I have Massive Attack’s video for “Unfinished Sympathy” in the back of my head now?
They played at Letterman’s? What a bunch of sell-outs. Let’s throw vegan egg-substitutes at them!