Thursday, October 27, 2005

CD Review: Miguel Mendez - My Girlfriend Is Melting

Miguel Mendez was born and raised in the LBC and attended Long Beach Polytechnic High School with Snoop Dogg. Mendez has collaborated with dudes like Farmer Dave (All Night Radio, Beachwood Sparks), Joel and Kevin Morales (Dios Malos), Tiffany Anders, and Sam Jayne (Love As Laughter). He's a guitaris, pianist, producer, and engineer. I copied all that from the CD My Girlfriend Is Melting. I guess it's all supposed to sound important and probably justify one's interest in him. It definitely sounds cool, though it's likely he will now get bombarbed with questions about Snoop when he does interviews.

Mendez is being touted as the next Beck which is sort of depressing for an old dude like me. Hell, I still remember all of those new Dylans (Forbert anyone?) and the new Springsteens. The laid back, dude lay off the 'ludes, ambience of lead off track "Drinking Beers" definitely cops an acoustic Beck vibe. It's creaky and fuzzed over with that 4 track feel. This mumbling country hippie bit gets to be damn slow by the time you get to the 5th cut "Wide Awake" which sounds like its being sung through an empty bong. Maybe the title is supposed to ironic since you'll find it difficult to stay awake through it.

It'd be a shame if you nodded out because the next song begins to show some promise in the kid. "Catchin A Wave" has some nifty piano notes and it sounds like some original neo-psychedelic threatening to take over the album. The Beck doppelganger interrupts the proceedings again on the next song, but "Number Race" which follows is some willfully weird yet beautiful music. My Girlfriend Is Melting needs more of these askew moments. "Fond Memories" slots into the stoner who dug Beck a little too much mode until somebody thinks to let some Beatles influence color the proceedings producing a much more genial hue to things.

Much of the album is slow to thhe point of catatonia and you wonder how much effort was required to make things seem so effortless. If you like sitting around the house passing stuff around while staring at black light posters of unicorns you'll probably dig this album. If you like Beck when he's not funky, then you might dig Miguel too. I'm just hoping his next release heads for strange and uncharted sounds and maybe next time his girlfriend won't be such a witch. Get it? His girlfriend is melting like a certain witch did and...ah hell forget it.

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