Mills End – Self titled debut CD
About the Artist: Tempe Arizona based Mills End just released their latest self-titled effort. Citing from their bio: Mill’s End carries on a tradition of American Alt-Country that blends modern influences with folk/Americana songwriting. The band’s sound is firmly rooted in a style reflective of Drive By Truckers, Whiskeytown, the Jayhawks and the Old 97′s, but with a healthy dose of classic and progressive rock. In 2008, jam sessions between singer/guitarist Jeff Bump and drummer Mark Bainbridge inspired the two to form Mill’s End, and they soon added bassist Geoff Butzine and lead guitarist/vocalist Keith Perillo to round out the foursome. A substantial repertoire of original songs quickly followed, as did a desire to share with the public a down-to-earth approach to experiencing live music. Mill’s End currently plays at popular Tempe and Phoenix-area clubs including the Yucca Tap Room, The Sail Inn and Hollywood Alley to an ever-expanding fan base.
Review: In this overly saturated genera/market with a plethora of artists coming out of the woodwork, armed with nothing more than a PC, Microphone, a guitar and a crappy sounding CD – it’s nice to know there are a few bands that can still rock out and play their instruments the way they were meant to be played. These new bands I speak of manage push their music out to the world and much of it is to do about nothing, and is substandard to say the least. So what do bands like The Smithereens, R.E.M, Black Crows nad Blues Traveler have that Mills End don’t? Not much if you ask me save the multi million dollars promotional machines and major record label support. Mills End break the mold with their powerhouse sound and amazing movements that will sizzle both the novice and advanced listener. Bump and company deliver diverse music that has a deep seeded Blues-Rock based -Alternative Rock roots. The playing skills of the band are red hot and the production quality value is rock solid for an Independent Artist. Musical overtones that will remind you of acts from The Mothers of Invention, to Captain Beefheart and His Magic Band, to Counting Crows. Right now after hearing their music and checking out a few of their live clips – they are what we’ve been waiting for musically. I don’t say stuff like that often. All in all a well-rounded ep that has much to offer many different listeners.
Top Track: Waiting t the Station, Castle, Lay Low
Criticism: CD is a bit short at 8 songs. Perhaps 3-4 more tracks re needed to make it a fully loaded catalogue.
Conclusion: Mills End stand out from other Indie-Alt artists in a good way within this very saturated market. Their answer to mundane music is to deliver something unique and powerful with a breath of fresh air and a rock steady playing style. One would be wise to keep a watchful eye on these cats over the next several years.
by Rory Richardson edited by Drew Blackwell (UK)
3.5 of 5 Stars