I’m a believer in the theory that great records will always always find their place in the sun, eventually. All it takes is for them to hit you at that vital moment, on the precise day when you are most ripe for them and then they all make sense.
How did I miss this when it was released two years ago? Maybe I was put off by Mini Mansions’ name (I’ve an aversion to any group who literally belittle themselves – Little Mix, Little Flames etc) or their Queens Of The Stone Age connections? In all probability, I was simply looking away, didn’t hear it when it was played on 6Music that one time. Anyway, I chanced across it online during a stint of researching new bands last week and on a cold early November morning when the world is teetering on the edge, peering into the precipice of a Trump presidency its queasy tone, shifting chord changes and White Album-esque air of dimly-lit foreboding sounded deliciously apposite.
And ooh it’s so very very catchy. Hell, I’ve even had to ration myself listening to it these past few days. Every play reveals new wonders – the heavenly choirs in the second verse, the sharp handbrake turn out of the first chorus, the way the song builds slowly, moving through its gears with grace and perfect poise. It’s a masterclass in how to arrange a pop song using all the old 20th Century tricks and yet it still sounds utterly contemporary.
So apologies Mini Mansions for missing this in 2014. Death Is A Girl was utter pop-noir brilliance on toast back then, but it’s even better now.