Dark Mean - Samuel The Phoenix 
Dark Mean - Samuel The Phoenix

Release Date: 25th February 2014

Well here's something a bit different. Straight out of the blocks, these guys declared that they're not looking for a label, they won't be going on tour and they're not even sure if they can be bothered to have a launch gig for this new 4 track EP. I'm almost impressed by this level of commitment to just making music for the love of making music - it all falls down if that music turns out to be covers of Vanilla Ice B-sides though.
Thankfully there is no sub-par rap on display here as the Canadian trio launch in to title track, 'Samuel The Phoenix', a country tinged stroll through golden fields of straw with a fine woman by your side that sounds more than a little like Midlake. 'Albatross' is not a great leap in styles from the previous track but there is something ridiculously comforting about the shuffling drums and understated organ sound supplemented beautifully by some well placed horns. 'High Heaven' is masterful in its subdued beauty with every note delicately placed after the one before like dominoes crafted from fine bone china. The appropriately named 'Last One' finishes up the EP and, much like the rest of this collection, it could easily soundtrack a heartrending hospital scene in some long running American TV drama. I can see why Dark Mean are not overly concerned with the trappings of rock'n'roll success but it's a shame because their mellow tones and attention to melodic detail could be enjoyed by many, many more people if they were so inclined.

More information: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dark-Mean/72929262711