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EP Review: Motion by Mayve

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Motion by Mayve

Long Island, NY based indie pop outfit Mayve has released its latest EP, Motion. Formed by friends Nick Micheline, Mike Gusman and Joe Rene, Mayve became complete with the recent addition of Kyle Murphy and Matt Emma. Since the release of their debut Animals last year, the guys have gone through a lot of change on all fronts, both as a group and as individuals. Those experiences served as the driving force behind the writing for Motion. As lead guitarist Gusman explained, “In a very literal sense, the whole EP is like someone is going through the motions of certain events of his life and coming to understand how those emotions and growth and relationships work.” Motion is available now. Mayve is partially influenced by 80s pop and it’s evident from the opening track, “You.”

At its core, “You” is an emotional love song about resolving feelings from the past and starting a new relationship in the present. Micheline’s soulful vocals are reminiscent of The Pet Shop Boys and perfectly deliver the song’s undertones of angst and moodiness with a sound that lures you in and makes you want to hear more. “45d(enter)” is the first of two brief interludes. The guys explained the title as standing for the 45th dimension and there is indeed a transcendent feel to this. If it is a place they sometimes go, they went there on this one.

Mayve hits its stride on the mid-tempo “1924.” Semi-organized musical chaos, “1924” takes an interesting approach to song construction with an untraditional arrangement. This otherworldly track tosses convention out the window mixing instruments, vocals and all sorts of styles from dream pop to R&B, but somehow it comes together musically. “Cruel Intentions” is a quick hit, love song that fits a lot of sound into three minutes. Straightforward lyrics against captivating synth lines and strong guitar work serve as the backdrop to Micheline who gets to stretch his vocals a bit more than on previous tracks. “Cruel Intentions” simplicity and upbeat vibe makes you want to get up, dance and have fun which makes it one of the best songs on the EP.

Motion moves from the lightness of “Cruel Intentions” into the dark, yet airy, “Young Blood.” Written about a friend who has gone down the wrong path, there is a sort of hopelessness to this song that makes it endearing. Although not a standout track, we’ve all had that one person in our lives we wanted to save but felt helpless to do so which makes “Young Blood” relatable. Mayve briefly breaks with another “45d(exit)” interlude before closing out with “A Motion,” hands down my favorite of the release. 

Frontman Micheline said, “We want our sound to live in the divide between light and dark,” and on “A Motion,” they accomplish that. It is the perfect combination of both, existing right in that hazy middle ground. With a completely different vibe than all of the other tracks, this one almost has the feeling of someone driving down a road watching the changing landscape as everything they pass progresses into whatever comes next. It is a beautiful way to wrap the EP and it shows just how much the band has grown since their debut last year.

On Mayve’s latest EP, Motion, the band refines and defines their sound. With a nod to the new wave and synth pop of the 80s, Motion is loaded with guitar riffs, pop grooves and synthesizers that will draw you in and leave you wanting more. The future is bright for the guys of Mayve and it will be interesting to see what they come up with next.

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