Based in Los Angeles but formed in Nashville, indie trio LANY have very much embraced those two very different worlds in their latest record, ‘Mama’s Boy’. Their third full-length is a predominantly polished synthetic LA pop, but the lyrics have been infused with the romantic charms of Nashville’s country music to create something that’s uplifting and soulful.
What’s crystal clear about ‘Mama’s Boy’ is that it’s a record about love. Opening track ‘You!’ is a grand ballad of affection, with softly spoken vocals accompanied by a large almost orchestral sound resonating from the three-piece. The simple repetition of the chorus “You, I’m nothing without you” is beautiful, built up by the surrounding verses of personal lyrics. Even when the record takes a sadder turn, as it does on ‘Paper’, the lyrics feel deeply romantic.
A centrepiece of the record is ‘I Still Talk To Jesus’. Far from Christian rock with mentions of alcohol abuse and drugs, this song still shows an intensely spiritual side of LANY that’s honest and beautiful. The purity of the lyrics are then amplified by the music, slow piano keys compliment the integrity whilst a choir of voices lifts up the divine element.
Indie music has always been compatible with country instrumentally, however, LANY don’t simply draw inspiration from country but embrace it when creating their brand of indie-pop. A polished sounding mix is given character through a country twang in ‘Cowboy In LA’. Referencing square dancing and palm trees in the same verse, LANY are presenting who they are in this track.
Even in the pop songs where the Nashville influence is less prominent musically, it’s still very proudly their lyrically. In ‘Good Guys’, vocalist Paul Jason Klein features the chorus line “Show you I’m a southern gentleman”, and this idea of a rustic sophisticate is what is so charming about the imagery and music within ‘Mama’s Boy’.
Honest and personal, ‘Mama’s Boy’ is a record that delivers an expression of love in its many forms. LANY have created pop music that flows between modern and nostalgic. It’s romantic, powerful, and overflowing with southern soul.