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Desinvolt Review Mnemotechnic 'Awards'

"Syncopated sounds, associated with repeated guitar riffs, heady drums and a bass which gains momentum throughout the album, producing a doped electro rock which is powerful and captivating."

As the new editor of Desinvolt, I was surprised by a personal request that awaited me in my inbox. Curious, I searched a bit and listened to these unknown boys from Brest who had signed with English-speaking label Smalltown America for their first record, thus becoming the first French group of their catalogue. Although they belonged to different musical formations, Arnaud (vocals and guitar), Damien (guitar), Xavier (bass) and Anthony-Mehdi (drums), they got together to form Mnemoechnic in 2009. A few years of work later, we were presented 'Awards', which came out on the 29th January 2013.

This is a surprising album, which does not fit into the boxes where you want to store music normally. This group successfully mixes genres and it is all the more difficult to categorise them: a little rock, lots of electro, a touch of pop and the sharp and syncopated singing of the singer who takes melodies high and far. In short, a true melodic festival that surprises, challenges and we want more. A strange feeling of urgency, adrenaline rush follows us in reading the playlist, so that it becomes almost oppressive. Their mastery and the singular voice of Arnaud, gives us a small air of The Rapture. But their supercharged music separates them from the measured sounds of the American group. Syncopated sounds, associated with repeated guitar riffs, heady drums and a bass which gains momentum throughout the album, producing a doped electro rock which is powerful and captivating.

The album, all in English, criticises the fact of wanting to be number one, at any price. The idea is also illustrated on the album cover. Each track tells a story, denouncing the spirit of competition without boundaries: the pills we take to be better ("Pills")... project deadlines ("Dead End"), ...

It is a remarkable début album, but not without defects in my eyes, or rather ears. The permanent tension of the first songs result in them blending and sounding alike. The arrival of "Welcome" and "Empty Page" allows us to breathe and digest the first part. I preferred listening to the album on random, less repetitive perhaps, or a little less oppressive. We are now expecting more!

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