New York rock band Mother Feather have just released their second album, Constellation Baby. The four-piece band is comprised of founder and lead vocalist Ann Courtney, keyboardist/vocalist Elizabeth Carena, guitarist Chris Foley and drummer Gunnar Olsen.
The ten-song album kicks off on a high note with Red Hot Metal. The syncopated guitar line and vocal counter melody heighten the interest of the verse before leading into a powerhouse, anthematic chorus that is sure to be an ear worm for many.
The album continues with Man, I Wish You Were Here, which is great for almost the exact opposite reasons as Red Hot Metal. Man, I Wish You Were Here is a tightly composed track, with each member of the band playing to a uniformed beat. The riff, which acts as the motif for the song, starts the song and ends it, with little stopping in-between.
By ICU, it’s more than evident that each member of the band understands their role, with each layer complementing one another. No layer blatantly overshadows any other layer, with each instrument getting their own time in the sun. Snakebite under stays it’s welcome, being the shortest track on the album at a mere one minute and fifty-three seconds. How Mother Feather managed to fit a verse, two choruses and a guitar solo into less than two minutes is beyond me, but it just works!
Desert Island has a staggered-start, with each instrument being slowly introduced into the mix. Between the strong, memorable and somewhat ‘sweet’ melody and the somewhat sombre subject matter, Desert Island is a very emotive track that is sure to warrant a repeated listening.
The album’s title track, Constellation Baby, sparks to life with Ann Courtney’s distorted vocals warming the stage for the rest of the band to jump in. The same credits given to Man, I Wish You Were Here, ICU and Snakebite can be applied to Constellation Baby, with the title track being a great representation of the vibe of the rest of the album so far. Though on paper their songwriting may appear to be formulaic, it definitely isn’t to the despair of the band, as it contributes to establishing their ‘sound’ while somehow avoiding becoming generic. It just works!
Totally Awesome is totally awesome. Establishing itself with a simple riff that’s repeated throughout the track, the band works with making ‘the simple’ into ‘the awesome’. As found on many of the tracks from Constellation Baby, the melodies of Totally Awesome are perfectly accented by the understanding of each member’s role within the band, culminating in a great track. Shake Your Magic 8 Ball has a surprisingly dark timbre in comparison to the rest of the album, which can probably be attributed to the bend-heavy main riff and the minor key the song is written in rather than the actual subject matter of the track. Shake Your Magic 8 Ball is both an example of great composition and execution and is one of the standouts on an already fantastic album.
The penultimate track of the album, Supernatural, is an energetic, pop-fuelled powerhouse of a song that does a great job of outlining a narrative while also being extraordinarily catchy.
I Blow a Kiss brings the album to a close. The near-six-minute track winds down the album by being acoustic-centric for a majority of the song before having an electric guitar and hard-hitting drum line come in towards the end of the track to bring the album to a grandiose conclusion.
Overall, Mother Feather’s Constellation Baby is a remarkable album that checks a lot of the right boxes. The talent and love for their craft that Mother Feather have is radiated throughout the whole album. This album is worth the listen.