Your EDM has been following Meanr Mynr since his first EP, The Compound in May 2017. A guitar badass who uses electronic song composition to back his wild riffs, Meanr Mynr can be compared to Ratatat somewhat, but with less production needed for his guitar, more soul and a lot more skill. His debut full-length album Park Hill Prophet just released last week on July 20 and it was more than worth the wait.
Critics and fans weren’t sure the direction Meanr Mynr would go with his first full-length venture, as his first EP The Compound was very electronically-influenced, while the follow up The Sacrifice seemed a little more analog and rock-based. What he’s actually released in Park Hill Prophet runs the gamut style-wise, but it’s less about style and more about substance and telling a story.
While the album and song titles are clues to the story Meanr Mynr wishes to tell in Park Hill Prophet, about his growing up in Denver and how the city formed who he is today, it’s a wonder how he will do the bulk of the storytelling with no vocals. He actually makes it surprisingly easy, as with each track the listener is given the feeling, the sounds and the emotions of each part of Meanr Mynr’s Park Hill journey in no uncertain terms. Using guitar styles ranging from Santana to B.B. King to Blur and even to Frank Black with the electronic backing tracks providing tonal support, every track is a trip down Meanr Mynr’s memory lane. It’s like a flashback in 14 tracks.
Musically, one could say that Meanr Mynr is an experimental musician. On tracks like album closer “Commission,” it certainly seems that way as pulsing synths are combined with light funk guitars and and 80s freestyle breakbeat, there is definitely an air of experimental sound design there. Other tracks like “M.L.K. Blvd.” are much more of a harmonious melding of styles. This track is a highlight of the album, with its emotive vocal sample and guitar melody working together with the sparse hip hop beat to bring shades of Gorillaz or Daft Punk. Still others like “Princess of Pontiac” and “On the One” surprisingly, have no guitars and are clearly to be taken at face value as interpretive sounds of a specific life event. It’s an interesting melange and easily beyond what anyone expected from the highly artistic artist.
There are so many styles on Park Hill Prophet there’s really something for everyone’s taste musically, especially those who love a little melding of rock and electronica. It’s pretty clear, however, that Meanr Mynr didn’t write the album to satisfy a number of tastes. It’s meant to be seen as a cohesive work of its own and, while eclectic, tells his formative story in very personal terms.