Here at the Send Me Your Ears studio today, we were super-excited to see The Mars McClanes hit the top of our reviews pile, with their latest single, Be Still.
The Mars McClanes have become firm favourites with the Send Me Your Ears team and were in our top artists of 2022. With good reason – their versatility and musicianship is simply sublime.
Be Still is a haunting and introspective look at the struggles of finding inner peace within a fast-paced world… or maybe just two hungover people trying to get through the morning after a big night out.
In Be Still, we were introduced to yet another side of The Mars McClanes. A lighter, almost trip-hop-style track which washes over you and relaxes the listener immensely.
Starting on single piano notes, the song takes a Roger Waters feel when a strummed guitar joins the mix. A thunderous heartbeat-like kickdrum fills the sound and some incidental swirling electronic instruments are enough to make the genre pigeon-holers scratch their heads in sheer confusion!
There are moments within the track where Portishead spring to mind, with their laid-back trip-hop approach. At times, the electronic instrumentation feels as though it is being played underwater and the swells and unique sounds create a spectacularly dynamic soundscape.
Fans of Marillion’s, Marbles, album will likely be drawn to this track. Lead vocals have a similar passion and chilled-out approach and the chord progressions are slightly reminiscent here too. Be Still sits begging to be picked up as a movie soundtrack. It is a stunning work of creativity.
We love an artist who, having already blown us away, can create something so dynamic and different from their previous work that we’re left trying to decide whether to nod our heads in approval or shake them in disbelief at the versatility on display. It reminds us of when we thought we had Frankie Goes To Hollywood pigeonholed and then they brought out Power Of Love.
Ideas from our ears
A cut in the vocal track at 160Hz would reduce an occasional slightly ‘muddy’ tone in the intro. The piano could use a dip around 400-450Hz to help it fit a little better in the mix too. As always these are just some ideas from our ears.
The Mars McClanes are pure quality. Buy their music. Add them to your playlist. You won’t be disappointed.