In my ears: Mother Mother


By Caroline Binley (@carolinebinley)
Who I’m listening to: Mother Mother
Favorite tracks: Ghosting, The Stand, Infinitesimal
Similar to: Ludo, Jukebox the Ghost
Only Nickelback has them beat as “the most hated band in Canada.” Their lyrics are strange, their music videos are stranger, and their vocals seem inspired by how Zooey Deschanel’s depressed ghost would sound. I can’t get enough of it.
Granted, their emo-to-the-extremo aesthetic is grating, but it’s also left them genuinely unmistakable; even their most conformist works (Let’s Fall in Love, Monkey Tree) bare the band’s trademark characteristics: they’re haunting (dare I even say ghosting?), upbeat and sung at a pitch to match Alvin and the Chipmunks. Don’t ask me how that’s a satisfying combination, but it is.
The bizarre electro/pop band was founded in 2005 by siblings Ryan and Molly Guldemond. Their current lineup also includes Jasmin Parkin, Ali Siadat and Jeremy Page. They first crossed my radar last year, and I’ve yo-yoed in and out of obsession on a monthly basis ever since.
For the past week, I’ve been craving their early tunes like Oleander and Aspiring Fires more than junk food. Concerning, considering the fact I’ve baked three rounds of chocolate chip cookies in that same span of time.
Their lyrics are often solely excuses for dynamic, electronic chords to take center stage, but they’re oddly relatable just as often. Infinitesimal, for example, may be the perfect song to ease needless worry. It’s silly, but every time I listen to the words “They say it started with a big bang / But they say it came out of a small thing / Lately I’m feeling like a big bang / ‘Cause I’ve been making something out of nothing,” I remember there’s not as much to worry about as I thought there was three minutes ago.
In addition to enjoyable if perplexing tunes, they’ve produced my all-time favorite music videos. Instead of tying the songs I love to stories I don’t, videos like The Stand only add to the images I already have in my head — something that might only be possible because their songs start so bizarre.

If nothing else, Mother Mother’s commitment to their distinct sound and far-out fashion sense leaves me wondering why Nickelback hasn’t stepped up their game.