The Last Mixed Tape reviews the self-titled debut extended play from shimmer-pop outfit Montauk Hotel.
Montauk Hotel is a record about style, substance and sound. The music of Montauk Hotel’s eponymous debut is a pristine one. Coated in shimmering reverb and vivid melody, the Dublin band wrap their 80’s indie-pop inspired songwriting with the panoramic production of the era’s mainstream (think the Cure meet Roxy Music in the modern age).
From the straight-up indie-pop vibrancy of ‘Black Dress’ (listen below) to the playful swaying found within the E.P’s closing track ‘In The Land’, the overall sound of Montauk Hotel as a band takes centre stage. Every harmony, melody and beat meld gently into each other to create a sound that takes what it wants from its influences and expands on them. Add to this the weightier lyrical themes explored in ‘1984’, which takes its concept from the Orwell novel – which has become even more relevant today, and you have a record that blends the past with the contemporary.
However it is ‘Dust’ that best captures the widescreen vista’s that Montauk Hotel are capable of. A ballad, ‘Dust’ is a lush multi-textured pop song that employs every songwriting trick in the book to pull you into its reverb soaked soundscapes. And it works fully, delivering the E.P’s high-water mark sonically.
It is important for a band in the early stages of their career to know who their influences are, but is just as important for them to branch out and move away from their roots. With their debut E.P. Montauk Hotel have done this, producing a highly stylised record filled with vivid flourishes of brilliance that set the four-piece apart. Leaving them in their own shimmer-pop milieu.
Montauk Hotel by Montauk Hotel is due out on Friday, March 10th