Mandy: Lawn Girl [Album Review]

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Lawn Girl
Exploding In Sound [2024]

Album Overview: Miranda Winters, known for her work with Melkbelly, steps into the spotlight with her debut album as Mandy, titled Lawn Girl. Despite quietly creating music for 15 years, she now embraces her solo identity, presenting a collection of songs that reflect on femininity, motherhood, and the artistic process in female spaces. The album features a mix of older and newer songs, capturing a sense of catharsis and self-discovery. Recorded and produced by Winters herself, with additional work at Electrical Audio, the album in her words embodies a “dirty-bubblegum pop rock” sound that balances exhilaration with tender introspection. That is a very accurate description as Lawn Girl is a solid 24 minute listen as its 9 tracks offer a straight forward indie rock delivery. Along with Winters, the album is performed by an all-women band–Linda Sherman (guitar), Lizz Smith (bass) and Wendy Zeldin (drums). It explores themes of femininity, family, friendship, and the journey towards self-realization.

Musical Style: Mandy’s Lawn Girl blends elements of noise, rock, and pop into a dynamic sonic earworm. The album’s sound is characterized by raw energy, introspective lyricism, and a blend of heavy instrumentation with moments of vulnerability.

Evolution of Sound: Winters’ solo debut showcases a departure from her previous work with Melkbelly, as it walks a more personal and intimate space. While still retaining indie elements that do not shy away from a blend of fuzz and rock, Lawn Girl explores a wider emotional range and experimental textures.

Artists with Similar Fire: Mandy’s sound on Lawn Girl draws inspiration from artists like Veruca Salt, The Breeders and Liz Phair, while also showcasing singer-songwriter styles and raw emotions of contemporaries like Adrianne Lenker, Grouper and Julie Byrne.

Pivotal Tracks: Key tracks on Lawn Girl include the blistering opener “Forsythia,” the infectious whirlwind of “High School Boyfriend,” which is probably the catchiest track on the album, and the lo-fi introspection of “Elder Fire” that is an excellent change of pace. The cover of Jimmy Webb’s “Now That I’m A Woman” is very Liz Phair like and stands out as a reflection on transition and self-discovery.

Lyrical Strength: Miranda Winters’ lyrics on Lawn Girl resonate with honesty and introspection, exploring themes of change, identity, and the passage of time. From reflections on teenage love to the complexities of adulthood, her words convey a sense of authenticity and emotional depth.

Instagram | Bandcamp | Exploding In Sound

Thomas Wilde

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