[N]ew England music fans are a lucky bunch. I mean just take a look at the number of our bands/solo artists that have made the music world stand up and take notice. One of those bands hailed from New Haven, CT and went by the name Miracle Legion. From the early 80’s to the mid 90’s they released one terrific jangly tune after the other before their unfortunate break-up after things went south with their record label. No longer able to play music as Miracle Legion Mulcahy, and 2 of his bandmates, went on to form Polaris after Nickelodean asked them to create music for their new show The Adventures of Pete and Pete. The show became a cult hit and the single “Hey Sandy” introduced many new ears to his signature sound.
It’s been eight years since Mulcahy’s last album, In Pursuit of Your Happiness, and during that stretch of time there has been a tribute album, Ciao My Shining Star: The Songs of Mark Mulcahy, featuring songs by Thom Yorke, Michael Stipe, and Frank Black just to name a few, and a Polaris reunion. The new release, Dear Mark J. Mulcahy, I Love You, was recorded in Northhampton, Massachusetts, a town overflowing with talented musicians, some of whom were asked to join in on the making of the album.
Dear Mark J. Mulcahy, I Love You is chock-full of the sweetly sardonic songwriting fans have come to know and love from the enigmatic entertainer. All 11 songs twist and turn between style and narrative, never allowing for the music to be nailed down into any particular description. The rollicking opening track, “I Taketh Away,” takes a jangly, well tuned backhand at those that follow without question and “kiss the ass that was presented,” and while your reeling the second track, “Everyone Hustles Leo,” struts up behind and hits your ears with the lyric “The first time was the worst time/The next time was the time before the third time/And so on and so on.” It’s not always supposed to make sense right?
Further along the way we are treated to a sort-of-tender love song with “She Makes the World Turn Backwards,” a well planned, breakout at the zoo with the spectacularly silly “Let the Fireflies Fly Away,” a bittersweet, lovelorn waltz beautifully titled “Badly, Madly,” and a melancholy request for acknowledgement in “The Rabbit.” The album’s last song “Where’s the Indifference Now?” is a cautionary tale about society’s capability to pass judgement on tragedy without knowing, or perhaps caring, about the facts.
Mulcahy has always seen the world through kaleidoscope colored glasses, and despite the trials and tribulations of life his music reminds us that we are all in this ride together…so let’s just have a bit of fun
Check out the great track “She Makes the World Turn Backwards” above and grab yourself a copy of the new album on The Mezzotint Label.