Even the most seasoned of music aficionados are bound to let at least one indie band from decades ago pass them by. It might be a tad embarrassing to say, but I never heard of Mock Orange before this week. The band from Evansville, Indiana has been around since the early ’90s and I just got their eighth album, Put The Kid On The Sleepy Horse. Turns out that it’s a fuzzy emo punk record that lights up the ears. In an era of music where fans are always receptive to nostalgia, Mock Orange harks back to alternative rock’s glory days with their latest release.
Sounding very similar to acts like The Velvet Teen, Braid and Sunny Day Real Estate, Mock Orange have an honest approach to their music. What I find interesting about their newest album is that the guitars never sound the same. Each track on Put The Kid On The Sleepy Horse features a different vibrato and tuning from Ryan Grisham and Joe Asher’s guitars. Some songs sound fuzzy and raw while others have a bit of a laid-back pop vibe. It makes for a wonderful listening experience while keeping the ears alert and anxious for what’s next.
Being recently introduced to Mock Orange makes me rethink what I was doing a few years ago when I could have been checking these guys out. Well, better late than never I guess. Let’s explore my top tracks off of the Album Of The Week so hopefully it’ll save the next music fan from making a similar mistake.
Keys are present in “High Octane Punk Mode” and there’s a bit of a dream pop vibe coming from the guitars and bass. “Chrome Alligator” is a bit jangly with the bass from Heath Metzger anchoring the entire track. It gives a thud that separates the song from the rest on the album. The fuzzy tones come out in “Window;” there’s some serious power present that absolutely electrifies. When everything gets syncopated, it’s like a freight train roaring from start to finish.
Unfortunately Mock Orange don’t have any show dates listed as of this writing, but be sure that they’ll be playing out more in support of their new album. Until they roll through your friendly neighborhood music venue, grab a copy of Put The Kid On The Sleepy Horse. It’s a unique record and a must listen for anyone who digs ’90s rock.
Stream & Buy Mock Orange’s Put The Kid On The Sleepy Horse on Bandcamp: mockorange.bandcamp.com/album/put-the-kid-on-the-sleepy-horse; Mock Orange’s Website: mockorange.net