Fast>Future>Present (Fifty Four Forty or Fight)
By: Alex Steininger
Playing slow, oft-times methodical, the songs found on Mandarin's Fast>Future>Present seem to build intricately, sometimes swelling, before retracting once again. It is this continual rollercoaster of sound and noise that propel these otherwise pop-focused songs, giving them both depth and texture. Played with the intensity and passion of the best indie-rock, Mandarin's control is what really sets them apart, as they seem to know where to take the song, or, if they don't, they let the song lead them. This is deep-thinking, foggy, folk-infused, math-rock inspired indie-rock with a bent of pop. Sure, it's quite the melting pop of various influences that, when put together, seem to become distant and blurry, but it is that adventure that makes Mandarin's complexity even that much more intriguing. I'll give it a B.
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