Mint Julep: Broken Devotion

Photo: Jen Dean

Those hip hipsters looking for something to satiate their M83/CHVRCHES fix could do a lot worse than with the appealing electro of this married duo.

Mint Julep

Broken Devotion

Label: Unseen Music
Release Date: 2016-02-12

"The project really just started out as a way to get my wife to sing," admits Keith Kenniff of Mint Julep, an electronic producer who probably keeps his My Bloody Valentine vinyl in the same room as his CHVRCHES CDs. Although he's released tons of songs by himself (and as Helios, and as Goldmund), working with wife Hollie seems to capture a certain spark in him, and with Broken Devotion, their second full-length proper, the duo have abandoned some of the more shoegaze-y elements of their earlier releases in favor of straight-up electro pop, all of it mid-tempo while showing real emotion pulsing through the circuitry.

For Broken Devotion especially, the sturdy electronics paint a somewhat bleak portrait, Hollie's lyrics often being notably poetic but dangerously careful with specifics (which, strangely, didn't seem to be a problem with previous album Save Your Season, which was less musically accomplished but was more pointed in its lyrical stances). Still, the steady rock throb of "Incinerate" and strobe-synth credits-scroll that is "The Promise" (aka the best M83 song to come out since that one album every one has) indicate that Mint Julep is only getting better with time. The numerous synth textures and similar tempos do blur things together a bit (especially in the first half), but just like a real-life mint julep, it won't belong before you're craving some more.


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