by tribestros USER (62 Reviews)
July 17th, 2007 | 115 replies

Release Date: 2006 | Tracklist

Review Summary: An amazing debut that ventures from pop-rock to spiraling epics with the talent of a band that's been at it for years.

In early 2006, a little alternative rock band with keyboards called Mute Math independently released their debut album, which happened to be self-titled. The album was put up on the internet and began to sell like crazy; and in no time Mute Math was landing shots on magazine covers and getting side-stage spots in huge concerts everywhere. Once Warner Brothers Records picked up the album, Mute Math shot up as a huge, unsuspecting hit on the music scene with their unique sound created by their multiple influences and their collage of rock, synth-rock, synth-pop and electronica. In no time, the single Typical was getting sung by Chris Sligh on American Idol, and the song was taking radio waves by force.

Not only is Mute Math's debut a collage of sound and influences, the lead singer Paul Meany manages to wail like Sting in many of the album's songs while wielding a keytar in style. But make no mistake; Mute Math's debut isn't a prototypical retro synth-rock record; Mute Math takes after Radiohead and Muse much more than they do The Killers. While some of the songs are arena-rock radio-ready anthems like Typical; the album manages to have a few Radiohead-influenced psychedelic songs like Stare at the Sun, Obsolete, and You Are Mine. But there's another something special that makes Mute Math special; as Paul Meany has a wonderful voice that allows him to wail like Sting or drop down to lulling vocals in songs like You Are Mine.

Opening up with Collapse, which is more of an introduction to the album than anything else, it manages to set the stage well for Typical, a poppy yet ridiculously catchy, fun, arena-rock anthem that features plenty of guitar riffs and keyboard twinges. Paul Meany manages to belt out vocals in style in the catchy chorus in a style that not many lead singers can. Chaos starts out like a Muse classic that quickly spirals into a bass-led epic where the lead singer Paul Meany shows where all the Sting comparisons come from. He wails away in the pre-chorus in a way that would make Sting's jaw drop. The song is really catchy, but a bit more electronica influenced than Typical but its still a great song.

Going from a rather standard yet really great and addicting sound with Typical and Chaos, the album manages to jump all over the place showing off a number of their influences and sounds. Songs like the OK Computer-era Radiohead influenced Without It and Stare at the Sun make this album a really good listen with their unique keyboard squiggles and spacy, atmospheric noises. You are Mine is very psychedelic and atmospheric, it really manages to grasp the feel of Mute Math's debut album as well as Paul Meany's echoing layered vocals manage to add to the epic sound of the song. And after a quick jolt back to the radio-friendly synth-rock with Picture, Mute Math's debut goes into a long spiraling epic called Stall Out which takes its influences from Radiohead and Arcade Fire as its simply amazing. The lead singer's voice captures you in the introduction with its soothing and dubbed down vocals; and it never really lets you go until the album ends.

It may seem as if Mute Math is best at ripping off bands; but its not what they do. Paul Meany's wonderful vocals and the excellent drumming in this album gives them a unique sound and feel their influences don't have. If this is what Mute Math calls their debut album, their future albums will be a work of art. I can only see this band going up from here, as they delve deeper into the catchy rock roots of songs like Typical and the experimental sounds of songs like Stare at the Sun and Stall Out. Mute Math is a band destined for greatness; and they'll only go up from here as Mute Math's self-titled may be one of the best debut albums of the decade.

Stall Out

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user ratings (427)

Comments:Add a Comment 
July 17th 2007


No comments?

The Jungler
July 17th 2007


the single annoys me to no end, the singer's voice is so lame.
good review

July 17th 2007


Yea the review is good. I've never heard of these guys, but I've never heard of a lot of stuff.

Digging: Sun Ra - The Magic City

July 17th 2007


You guys should really listen to it.

July 17th 2007


Such a bland group.

July 18th 2007


Pretty bad.

July 19th 2007


I have had the displeasure of hearing the single twice on the radio. At first I was like, hey this is okay, and then it went immediately downhill from that moment.

August 11th 2007


Album Rating: 4.0

I don't know what everyone above me is on, this is great music. The vocals are great, the electro-alt mix is interesting, and the drummer plays some pretty interesting beats.

I just wish they'd replace a couple instrumentals with Chaos+Typical type songs.

The video for Typical is pretty sweet and their live show looks awesome (and I've only seen about 40 seconds of it on Youtube. AP magazine does say they're "the #1 band you need to see live before you die")This Message Edited On 08.11.07This Message Edited On 08.13.07

August 11th 2007


I actually made an effort not to like this band but I'm beginning to reconsider. Then again I've only heard this stuff a few times though.

September 24th 2007


the single, "typical", is not a good representation of the band. they are a lot less poppy than that and their radiohead/coldplay/muse influences are very strong. i used to not like them cause of the single, but one of my musician frineds reccomended them cause he wouldn't listen to a band that sucked. so i bought the album and its been pretty good so far. better than most of the new stuff anyway. give it a try plus they're live shows are supposed to insane

December 31st 2007


Album Rating: 4.5

very good review, i heard chaos on the radio and had to go out and buy it. I found it tuly amazing. I usually dont like something this much but the band and album is great. Good review as well. Break The Same is the best song.

January 23rd 2008


I'm getting back into this album, I like it. And their single is not a good song to gage how they sound, at all.

May 29th 2008


Album Rating: 4.0

singles hardly ever do. This is quite an album. Great review, I've listened to this band a lot and never realized the vocal similarity to Sting, but you're totally right. I feel like Mute Math puts out some EXCELLENT songs on their own, but also some really lame, boring ones. I hope the next album is able to be more consistently awesome. I might actually write my next review on this...

May 29th 2008


Album Rating: 4.0

oh yea, and they're absolutely unbelievable live

May 29th 2008


Album Rating: 3.5

yeah they're supposed to be insane live. they do handstands and cartwheels and other shenanegans and they play "typical" backwards.

August 19th 2008


Album Rating: 4.0

God, Darren King is one of my absolute favourite drummer. I love Mute Math. This is a great album, but I prefer their previous EP to this. "Reset" has to be one of the best instrumentals I've ever heard.

August 22nd 2008


Album Rating: 5.0

I can't stop listening to this album, and I found my new favorite drummer. I picked up their live DVD and like them even more!

August 28th 2008


This band is amazing. A friend of mine burnt me a copy of their live cd, which is even better. I can't listen to most of the songs on the studio CD anymore, just because they lack the energy that they have on the live CD. It's still a great cd though.

August 28th 2008


Album Rating: 3.5

Typical is the sweetest music video i think i've ever seen

August 28th 2008


Album Rating: 4.0

Heck yeah it is.

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