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  • Writer's pictureGemma Cockrell

EP REVIEW: Mylar - Lost in the Shuffle

A band confronting things they have previously shied away from, allowing them to embrace their full potential

The sequel to last spring’s Human Statues EP, Lost In The Shuffle sees Mylar flying solo, marking a bold new chapter in their career. Their '80s influences - think XTC, The Blue Nile, and The Cure - are still present, but Mylar's glossy pop is left in the past, in favour of heavier and rawer sounds.

With personal struggles and line-up shake-ups in the mix, a groovier beast has emerged from Mylar’s sound. As they put it: “Everything's a bit more soulful because there’s more at stake.”  From the rhythmic jerks and the cutting, concise chorus on ‘Scribbled Sunset’, to the kraut-rock and metal influence on ‘Cold’, this is Mylar as we’ve never seen them before.

If you’re a fan of Seinfeld, you aren’t mistaken if you think you can hear hints of the intro music in the former of these: the track came together from the band discovering a sound which is essentially the same slap bass sound. The upfront and direct nature of the track is an indicator of where Mylar are in their career at the moment - they’ve got nothing to hold back and nothing to lose.

Meanwhile, the previously mentioned ‘Cold’ is completely different to anything the band have explored before on previous projects, both in terms of the influences that they incorporate into the sound as well as the structure of the track. The lack of chorus gives it a chaotic feel, depicting the frantic and relentless rush of city living that can whisk you off your feet at times.

'In a rawer light than ever before': Mylar (photo credit: Lisa Melkumov)

The influence of XTC can be seen most clearly on this track, in the way that the lyrical content and melodies blend seamlessly into one to convey the song’s meaning. Elsewhere, it shines through once again on the closing track ‘Wallflower’, where they are unafraid to delve into some unashamedly romantic feelings within the lyrics, spoken with a heartfelt honesty.

Another personal moment on the EP is the opening track ‘A Man Will Make’, but here, there is a more universal touch, which will render it likely that the listener will be able to take the meaning of the track and apply it to their own situation, whatever that may be. The track is driven by call and response vocals rather than the instrumental, which is more stripped back and subtle in its approach.

Once all of the tracks on the EP are positioned next to one another, Lost In The Shuffle proves that Mylar are reluctant to stick to one formula within their music and unafraid to push the boundaries that have previously confined them. This sets them free to explore different themes and take contrasting musical approaches at each turn.

Lost In The Shuffle presents them in a more authentic and rawer light than ever before, but rather than leaving them harshly exposed, or feeling like anything is lacking from the picture, it instead presents them as a band who are confronting things that they have previously shied away from, allowing them to embrace their full potential.

Rating: 7.2/10

Lost in the Shuffle is out on Tuesday (16 April)

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