Zak Fleisher’s MEAN is a love letter to Alex Turner and the Arctic Monkeys. Fleisher injects a mock Sheffield-style into his vowels, much akin to how a Balinese didgeridoo-maker places a haphazardly placed ‘made in Australia’ sticker on its non-indigenous wood. It’s cool, and you get a little ‘aha’ moment when you pick up the influence in the verse, but it compromises on the individuality of the track.
But where MEAN lacks, it gives in its mischievous, accusatory attitude. With a brass section added in the latter half of the track, it’s tempting to almost drop into a ska-infused dance.
Think, a bag of Twining’s comprised of the herbal essence of Bob Marley’s cryogenically frozen dreadlock, dropped to brew and forming what the brass section is in this song.
At times, it can feel a little bit carbon-copy, but it’s still a fun number to dance and get lost to. It’s fun, good honest indie rock and at the end of the day—isn’t that the point?