On The Lips by Molly Lewis album review by Greg Walker for Northern Transmissions. The artist's full-length is now available via Jagjaguwar


On The Lips

Molly Lewis

“Mood lighting is a must – the record will not play if you have bad lighting. Splayed on a chaise lounge with eyes closed works too. Light chit-chat between friends or lovers is encouraged. Clinking of crystal glasses makes great additional percussion. Silk or velvet should be worn, or alternatively, fully nude always works!”

That is a note from Molly Lewis, regarding her latest album of songs which just came out on Jagjaguwar Records this Friday, in which there is not a word sung. It is all—whistles! I’ve been complimented on my whistling before, but there are amateur whistlers and there are professional whistlers, like Molly. Whistlers that can do the “Star Spangled Banner” or “Moonlight Sonata,” or in this case, some sultry, jazzy stuff, that could soundtrack a 50’s movie or even an old Western film.

As Molly’s note communicates, it is above all “mood music.” There is something so nice, to escape from the trappings of words for a spell, and get lost in the music and just the music, including some songs with the great bands Thee Sacred Souls and Menahan Street Band. It’s not “on the nose,” it’s On The Lips. It’s a bit cheeky, to be sure, but also expertly composed and performed.

Sometimes you can’t tell the difference between an intricate synth or a guitar line, and a line of whistling. It reminds me of music that my grandpa might enjoy, something I can’t say a lot, as a reviewer of modern music. And it’s music that can (and probably will) soundtrack some good cinema coming out, like her song, “Meeting Ruth,” which soundtracked the new Barbie film. It has that “film noir” feel to it, that is a bit popular these days. A thoroughly enjoyable record, good for a populous party or an evening at home—perhaps in your birthday suit.

With titles like “Crushed Velvet” and “Slinky,” “Lounge Lizard” and “The Crying Game,” you get just the feeling that Molly is going for. She is an expert whistler known for her whistling, just as the best vocalists are known for their growls or arias, or the best guitarists for their tasty licks. Take a half hour and be transported to a world created mostly by Molly’s beautiful lips.

order On The Lips by Molly Lewis HERE


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