Mellie I Have Ideas, Too

15th February 2023

Format Info

LP - black vinyl

Leipzig’s Mellie are a special proposition. As a trio, they’re completely locked in with each other, a rhythm section who seem umbilically linked in flexing and probing the potential of their instruments and vocal arrangements that are in turns pretty and moody.

It reminds us in parts of Stereolab, but in place of that group’s utopian dreaming they’ve got a world weariness born of relationship breakdown and urban decay. The guitars and bass weave in between the other neatly and succinctly like early Tortoise patterns, with dual male/female vocals bringing a pleasing Sea + Cake vibe. The tales are forensic skits about living in the city, any urban Western city plagued by late stage capitalism but in this case it’s the grand, socialist-leaning city of Leipzig. Julia Boehme and Marius Huber’s duel vocals compliment each other well, breathy but not too ghostly and always in service to the taut tension the trio conjure with their instruments.

The active basslines have a Television-esque use of space and melody, the spindly guitar lines crawl all over the music like tentative fingernails click clacking and in turn stroking or striking. A track like Flaw has a galloping drum pattern and droning bassline allowing the vocals and guitars to ponder and ring together. The title track has a searching, almost U.S. post-rock rhythm with subtle synth inflections and connected vocals that reminds us almost of a more organic Kreidler or Notwist. In fact the more we listen to this music it feels like a post punk answer to a lot of the German music we love, the practitioners of Munich, Cologne and Berlin who form on of the backbones of Monorail. Let’s add Leipzig to the web of intrepid musicians working it at the fringes.