Pale Monsters - All This Time We Wait
Boston’s Pale Monsters’ new single “All This Time We Wait” from their recent full length studio debut Are You Feeling Alive? will likely end this still comparatively young year as one of the best recent singles coming out of the indie rock scene. Chris Mulvey’s singer/songwriter chops is what gives this song much of its impetus, but his Pale Monsters band mates bring the best out of him as well and play with finessed abandon quite unlike anything else on the current scene. Each of the band’s four members are longtime veterans of the Beantown music scene and are renowned up and down the East Coast for both their instrumental chops, but the real key to this song’s success is how Mulvey and the band brings together a strong accessible approach to crafting modern rock mildly informed by retro ethos, yet distinguished by a distinctly intelligent approach to songcraft recalling the more artful approach embraced by many iconic New Wave/alt rock/art rock acts who emerged during the Seventies and early Eighties.
Chris Mulvey is definitely a powerful singer and, if you haven’t heard him before, you’re in for a treat. One might believe that the song’s sub-three minute running time doesn’t provide listeners with enough time to take the measure of his talents as a singer and his ability to convey a strong personality, but Mulvey proves them wrong long before this song ends. The track kicks off with its chorus and he’s obviously throwing himself into the song for all its worth and, despite the studio nature of the recording, the inspired bellow in his voice suggests the band might have cut this song live in the studio. The lyrics are a bit dark at some points, but there’s also an exultant hopefulness in this song that’s conveyed by both the writing and the sound of Mulvey’s voice. He’s, likewise, joined by strong backing vocals that underline his talents in an effective way.
Keyboards are a big part of why this song works and the synths cop a slightly unusual, swirling sound many listeners may not expect. The drums are equally critical to the success of the song and move from one gear to another without ever losing the plot or rushing things along in an undue manner. The two minute forty six second running time suggests that Pale Monsters might be racing from the start to the end without any nuance, but there’s nuance galore in this song. Thankfully, however, there’s no instrumental self indulgence here like we might hear from other acts in this vein and that’s likely a reflection of the band’s experienced artistic sensibilities coming to bear on the tune. Pale Monsters’ “All This Time We Wait” is a perfect single to release from this album and, for newcomers, will introduce them to this Boston quartet in high style.