The dictionary definition of odd is “different to what is usual or expected”, and is said to mean ‘eccentric’, ‘unusual’, or ‘unconventional’. It is with this definition in mind that we happily describe Liverpool’s Mr Ted as ‘quite odd’. They are certainly different to what is usual or expected, and for that we are thankful.
Mr Ted are a serious band that don’t take themselves too seriously. It is hardly surprising that Mr Bungle are listed as an influence, given the manic and slightly wacky nature of their music. They are a band that is difficult to describe, let alone pigeonhole into any genre. The band themselves say their music is ‘scrunge’; short for scouse grunge, which seems as apt a description as any.
In November last year, almost eight years after they performed their first gig, Mr Ted released their debut single, ‘Shame’. Both that track and the new single ‘Muscle Milk’ are taken from their upcoming debut album El Dirty Sexy, which is due out in the Summer of 2019. Both songs display Mr Ted’s fondness for melodic heavy music, and entertainingly absurd lyrics.
‘Muscle Milk’ evokes comparisons to Faith No More, with a very deliberate nod to System of a Down in the bridge. The song manages to be riff heavy without actually being ‘heavy’, as it is melody that really drives this song. This combination gives it a post-grunge rock feel, and at times drawing an unlikely similarity to Australia’s Grinspoon (worth a listen to those who aren’t familiar).
In what could be the most unusual UK Dairy Council promotion ever, ‘Muscle Milk’ seems to be advocating the health benefits of Milk. The words “Flex” and “Power” are shouted over the top of the introduction, whilst the main vocal begins with “it’s delicious, but nutritious, full of protein”. Backing vocals proudly sing “protein” throughout the track. Given the tongue in cheek nature of the song, perhaps it is better aligned with the very entertaining British Milk Council twitter account.
Despite the slightly comical nature to the lyrics, ‘Muscle Milk’ doesn’t feel like a joke song. It has an aggressive waltz, with some big tough guitar riffs, the verses build tension, the chorus provides the release. The bridge breaks the song down and leads into a big instrumental guitar solo and outro. And just when you start feeling this is all getting very serious, the song ends with a scream, and a very scouse accent claiming “Aaah, I fooked up!”
‘Muscle Milk’ is due for release on the 8th of February, and is being launched at Sound Basement, Liverpool. For more information about Mr Ted check out their socials, Instagram, Twitter, and in particular Facebook, which has a very entertaining story about who ‘Mr Ted’ allegedly is.
Words Nicholas Cheek.