Mingus Murray is a self-described “Art Nouveau Rock Star from the future traveling back in time to save humanity from the monotony that has come to drown the radio waves. (bio)” Listening to Mingus’ album, that’s the vibe you essentially get from the project—it’s different and doesn’t feel like anything contemporary minus the parallels between Kenna’s New Sacred Cow, and Van Hunt’s On The Jungle Floor, with Prince-like influences.
The problem with Mingus’ album is essentially nothing that he has done, but more so a problem with the current music situation. This album is realistically a labor of love that Mingus himself wrote and produced all the songs for, but this album has gone so deep under the radar that it’s not even funny. It seems a lot of times these days artists get glorified for working with this producer, or these artists that the artists who are essentially not as well known who make quality music never get their full shine, and this album is the prime example of that.
The artsy album is a blend of rock, 80’s and soul production, as well as sometimes racy and sensual lyrics. Aside from the auto-tuneish elements added to his voice and the breathy vocals, listeners can tell that he as a pretty decent voice. The 8-track album is a rather smooth listen with one brief almost interlude song, “It Must Be About To Hang.” The project has three songs that are definite high points, the first comes from “Just The One 4 Me.” The lyrics on this song are sweet, “You’re just the one for me, you make me see the beauty in all these human beings…” and his vocal performance on this track blends in with the Prince inspired production.
“Designer,” is a very 80’s inspired song, that seems like a song, and the way the vocals sound on the chorus make this song an album highlight. The song is also very visual, perhaps with the fashion references but you can instantly hear some fashion show using the songs as the background as a runway show or something of the sort. “Switch Positions,” the production on this song is maybe the most hip-hop infused track on the album from a production standpoint, which is fitting with the almost rap like breakdown of the song towards the ending of the song.
“Blue Dress,” is the most rock inspired song on the album complete with a guitar solo and pretty interesting lyrics, “I’m not giving up no drugs, I’m just giving all of my love, it may be magic, damn it’s sweet, trust me baby it’s something you need.” The album is available for free download via Mingus’ Tumblr page. Support quality music and pick it up, as it’s definitely a rather refreshing and high-energy album.
– Erin Duncan