LANY may be best known as an LA band, but on third album mama’s boy the trio tune into their Southern roots for their most honest and accomplished work to date.
Structured by frontman and primary lyricist Paul Jason Klein in a country studio outside Nashville, mama’s boy is a reflection of everything from religion and heritage through to the glossy break-up anthems the band have become notorious for.
Opener you! sets the tone for the entirety of mama’s boy. Glistening synths dance around Klein’s lulls of “I’m nothing without you”, providing a sense of romanticised nostalgia in typical LANY fashion; while heart won’t let me leans back toward the trio’s familiar heartache. “I should probably have already left / but I never listen to my head” Klein yearns.
The sense of growth amongst the trio starts to grow as they veer away from romance and begin to reflect on family and religion, if this is the last time, a love-letter to Klein’s parents tugs firmly on the heart strings; while i still talk to jesus hears him reflect on using alcohol and drugs despite a dedication to christianity.
Highlights may have come early in you! and cowboy in LA, but it’s in the despair of good guys - “I just wanna give you everything / show you I’m a Southern gentleman / All I wanna do is let you in / But good guys, good guys never win” that everything LANY have done to date comes to a peak.
There’s certainly change to be found in mama’s boy, but LANY’s third album remains familiar. Stripping away the catchy pop hooks we’ve come to know and love, mama’s boy is as emotional sonically as it is lyrically while retaining the nostalgic, driving at night atmosphere which will find a soft spot in the heart of any of us indie kids.
LANY’s deep dive into their roots pays off as a genuine and admirable insight into both Klein’s past and present, something which fans will be truly grateful for.