Mates of State: Re-Arrange Us

By BEN WESTHOFF  |  June 3, 2008
4.0 4.0 Stars
Although their last CD experimented with song structure, for their fifth album, Mates of State sought out and found the perfect pop tune. Ten of them, actually. The title, I imagine, refers equally to the members’ family (husband-and-wife team Jason Hammel and Kori Gardner recently had another daughter and moved to New York), their group (they’re joined by players from Spoon and Death Cab), and the songs, which have been ecstatically conceived and contain nary a molecule of fat. “Now,” “My Only Offer,” and “The Re-Arranger” are so instantly pleasurable, it will take you a minute to realize that they’re about growing pains, marital compromise, and other heady, unglamorous domestic stuff. But as DC outfit Georgie James showed with their 2007 debut, Places, pretty ditties and relationship discord can be made to melt together. “Love loud, don’t lose loud,” Mates of State sing, offering parenthood and marriage as potent topics for rock stars.
Related: Mates of State, Unrequited love, Mates of State - side, More more >
  Topics: CD Reviews , Mates of State, Mates of State, Mates of State,  More more >
| More

Most Popular
Share this entry with Delicious
  •   INTERVIEW: JAMIE FOXX  |  August 11, 2009
    "Until you get a chance to define another side of your career, people will always say, 'You're doing it as a hobby.' "
  •   INTERVIEW: JOHN LEGEND  |  August 05, 2009
    Despite being one of the most successful R&B singers of the decade — with six Grammys and three top-selling albums — John Legend is something of an oddball.
  •   SAY WHAT?!  |  September 02, 2008
    Rapper Esoteric has been getting lots of death threats via e-mail recently. But he’s not too worried about them, if only because of their elementary character.
  •   THE CALL OF THE WILD  |  July 28, 2008
    It’s not easy being in a band whose two primary songwriters have quite different ideas about how to write an indie-rock song.
  •   THE SILENT RAPPER  |  July 21, 2008
    One of the most influential hip-hop MCs of all time, Rakim brought rap from its sing-songy beginnings into its late-’80s golden era with his dense lyrics and virtuoso internal rhyme structures.

 See all articles by: BEN WESTHOFF