No offense to the late, great Jay Reatard, but Mind Spiders sound like what Jay's band (one of many), Lost Sounds, could have been. Strangely enough, Mind Spiders are a side project of Marked Men guitarist/vocalist Mark Ryan. However, the Marked Men haven't released a new album in four years while Mind Spiders have released one in each of the last three years. That's an awful lot of time and effort for a side project.
Like the two previous and fantastic albums, Inhumanistic is a bizarre mix of sci-fi synths and garage pop punk. The opening "Prelude" is an ominous, John Carpenter-like dirge heard in a horror movie when we see the killer's lair. It leads right into "Inside You", right where (according to the lyrics) Ryan, who handles all lead vocals, wants to go. In the context of the instrumental, this could get creepy but the pep with which he sings the words negates any queasy feeling. That is, unless you get queasy from awesomeness. The pace keeps up with the lively "Suicide".
Another adrenaline pumper, "They Lie", was featured earlier this year on the Garage Swim compilation. For a preview, download it for free from the Adult Swim website and be instantly dragged into the band's world of fuzzy, yet extremely catchy tunes. The keyboards become a tad more prevalent in "You Are Mine" as they really add magnificent texture. They punctuate the end of "Pictures" and swirl into the ether at the start of and throughout the delightful mid-tempo "I Want You". Things pick back up again big time with "Make Make Make Make" dashing at a brisk pace. The album closes on the apropos "Oblivian" where we hear what it might sound like to get flushed out of an airlock in outer space.
Only clocking in at just over half an hour, Mind Spiders have still somehow managed to create something that feels so much bigger. Inhumanistic is a vociferous space odyssey with plenty of addictive hooks. Fans of the Marked Men need not worry that Mark Ryan isn't using his time wisely. Mind Spiders have three superb records under their belts in three years. There could be no stopping them, nor should anyone try.
Inhumanistic comes out Oct 8 from Dirtnap Records.