The Mockers really are big in Spain. The Spanish version of their latest album even comes with a booklet containing the album lyrics translated into Spanish! We’re talking about an album called The Lonesome Death of Electric Campfire (2005).
What a great album it is! Seth Gordon and Tony Leventhal’s songs are excellent, again. As a result, the album is full of catchy songs. Something New features absolutely beautiful melodies and some amazing piano playing and jangly guitar sounds. Doin’ Time has very Fountains of Wayne-like lyrics, and the Emperor Strikes out is rock’n’roll fun with anti-Bush lyrics (also, check out the hilarious music video!). Mola, guay, OK (another amazing track) is a treat for Spanish fans due to its entertaining lyrics, partly written in Spanish.
The lyrics are definitely a distinctive feature to the Mockers. ”We're not laughing with you, we're laughing at you" it says on their MySpace, and although this probably is true, Gordon and Leventhal’s lyrics are never too arrogant. They always include the essential self-doubt part in their songs: “What makes me think I’m not the same?” Also, what is great about The Mockers, is the exceptionally easy-going feel of their music. There really isn’t much of that angst that you’ll find nearly everywhere in power pop.
The album sounds very good, thanks to the production work of powerpop hero (and The Mockers band member) Robbie Rist. Also, the arrangements are superb. Seriously, who could ever resist the cheerful horns and upbeat rhythms of Straight in the Eye, or the very beatlesque feel of Willoughby Station (again spiced up with those great horns)?
I certainly have to mention that before I listened to this album, I totally fell in love the previous one, Living in the Holland Tunnel (2001). That album has lots of real killer tunes, such as Coronation, Sunflowers, Funk #50, Comes As No Surprise, and, of course, the greatest-of-all Sheepwalking (those jangle guitars!!). That album is simply excellent. The Mockers certainly don’t include fillers on their albums.
It’s actually quite hard to decide, which one of these two albums is better. In fact, I still haven’t listened to The Mockers’ first album (Between Mocksville and Harmony, 1995). Another task to be finished..
That’s it. I’ll go back watching The Rosenbergs on YouTube (my recent favourite hobby)…
The Mockers at MySpace