Mommy Long Legs‘ debut LP ‘Try Your Best’ is a cacophonous, sugar-punk record that feels more urgently visceral than (but just as deliciously sardonic as) recent works by Seattle-based contemporaries TacocaT and Chastity Belt. Blending elements of shock, riot grrrl, and what one might call glitter puke, Mommy Long Legs delivers incendiary lyrics over nauseatingly groovy hooks. Thank f**king Goddess, hail to the freaks, and other such expressions of exasperated praise.
For those who are unfamiliar with this deliriously invigorating group, Mommy Long Legs began expressing steady disdain for yr imperialist-capitalist-white-supremacist patriarchy with 2015’s ‘Assholes’ EP. Following 2016’s ‘Life Rips’ “mini-album” (hey, it’s punk) and featuring a couple tracks from 2017’s ‘Rock Product’ EP, ‘Try Your Best’ is a proper, full-length release that should ensnare today’s disaffected youth à la Bikini Kill and Bratmobile.
While album-opener ‘Alien’ does not immediately plunge listeners into a tide pool of anti-capitalist and feminist discourse, it oozes a classic-horror-monsters-at-the-beach vibe Mommy Long Legs conjures throughout this LP. Although guttural vocals don’t appear consistently on ‘Try Your Best’, Lilly Morlock‘s delivery here effortlessly captures the group’s uncanny/unheimlich sound and overall aesthetic. Buzzing guitars and jangling hooks offer immediate appeal while Leah Miller‘s basslines, undulating noises at the conclusion of ‘Ditched You’ and ‘Try Your Best’, and “barf/fart-core” humor (see: “Zuckerberg / Zuck a turd” on ‘Logging Off’) keep one slightly distant.
Yet, Mommy Long Legs awe listeners. ‘Bridezilla’ features a sinister “bridal chorus” bassline, feigned excitement (“I can’t wait to do the missionary / Can’t wait, can’t wait, I can’t fucking wait“), and surf-rock organs that make one’s eyes roll back in either annoyance or delight. The album’s closing, eponymous track oscillates between twisting verses and fist-pumping refrains while ‘Dick Move’, ‘Bitch Island’, and ‘Lube the System’ each begin with gut-busting “interludes,” the latter two drawing from Space Ghost Coast to Coast and a mall feminist interview. If there is a supreme deity, may the term “moist music” never, ever disappear from our collective lexicon.
Engaging with Mommy Long Legs‘ ‘Try Your Best’ is like chomping into a glossy piece of candy, only to break yr teeth as fetid, zombified liquids spew from the rupture; however, rather than recoiling in disgust, you proceed to devour the entire bag while doing a sick kickflip off a fascist’s skull while “Call You Out” blares from yr cassette player. This isn’t yr mum’s basement punk; it’s abrasively saccharine, technically sound, and utterly enjoyable.
The full tracklist is as follows:
2. Bitch Island
3. Ditched You
4. Dick Move
5. Logging Off
6. Lube The System
8. Call You Out
10. Try Your Best
‘Try Your Best’ is out now via Youth Riot Records.