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Wednesday, 28 September 2022

The Mommyheads - Genius Killer (Name Your Price)


I'm not sure if I like any band more than New York's The Mommyheads. I certainly can't think of one. There really is no one quite like them. You can compare individual songs to others, but as a whole naaah. Last month I did a prelude piece on the album here

I haven't re-read that piece, so if I repeat myself you will know how true the words are. For a band well into their fourth decade, there is no sign of the quality letting up, quite the reverse Highly intellectual, yet incredibly Pop at times. 

Essentially Indie, but with ventures into Psych, Prog and Pop Rock. They've been compared to Queen, Radiohead and XTC on the same album. Here the poperatic stuff is nowhere to be seen, but the other two are. They have always been a thinking man / musician's band, here they seem deeper than ever.

Unexpected instruments enter at will, expecting something Guitar led, a keyboard run will come in from nowhere. Take for instance Distil Your Love Into That Dying Light is all funk, but stills manages to unleash a fantastic Pop Rock chorus. Impulse Item is an epic opener, but still manages to slip in a short classical run.

Impulse Item is wonderful, all moody at the start, breaking into a monster of a song, as commercial as The Mommyheads get and rewardingly so.  Yet She's A Fighter is almost Bossa Nova lounge and Bittersweet slowly visits everywhere, almost Soul at times to a Roxy Music-ish bass line. 

One And The Same is very XTC around the mid 80s, We Almost Lost It All is heartfelt, mighty in its melancholy. First Five Seconds is Modern Prog at its very best, showing how the genre can be so misconstrued as an abiltiy lesson when it can be done as well as this.

Idealist is splendid, very complex, rhythms everywhere, a raiding of the musical instrument cupboard and like four songs in one. I urge you to read the lyric sheet, there is so much depth and message in every song, never more so than on the title track.

Genius Killer remains the real earworm for me. It is the song in which you notice the lyrics most across a wonderful rhythm section and a killer angular riff. I've not mentioned Privilege, which is wonderfully venemous with added African Rhythms and Sax. Genius Killer is an absolute tour de force!

You can listen to and download the album here. The download is at Name Your Price on Bandcamp, but please and try to pay at least a little something, Talent Is An Asset! The album will also be available on CD and Vinyl at The Mommyheads site here.



  1. Great set last night in Boston (actually Somerville). Don - Andy says hi and thanks for the glowing review!

  2. I love The Mommyheads!