Monophonics are officially back! Today, the band announces their upcoming Mirrors EP and a supporting tour through the Pacific Northwest and Colorado. Mirrors–the band’s first release since 2015’s Sound of Sinning, available now to pre-order–is comprised of six rare covers, fusing the complementary and explosive soul, rock, and funk influences of the Bay Area’s psychedelic soul sound. The first single, “My Heart Cries”, featuring Tiffany Austin, is available today.
“We wanted to do a couple songs that were more familiar to people and then shine some light on groups we’re big into,” lead singer, keyboardist, and co-producer Kelly Finnigan explained in a press release. “Not only are these great songs, but these are artists that we listen to and are influenced by.” He continues, “It’s not about making records that sound old, it’s about making records that sound cool.” Even the familiar tunes receive a fresh treatment as instrumentals on Mirrors, despite their ubiquity as vocal songs.
As a press release detailed, here is a rundown of Monophonics’ upcoming Mirrors EP:
The EP opens with a ‘tip of the cap’ to The Main Ingredient’s version of “Summer Breeze” before the band unfolds a hazy, mellow-funk opus worthy of inclusion on a Bob James CTI album. The next four songs, all featuring vocals, range from the lowrider soul ballad, a cover of the The Invincibles’ “My Heart Cries” with a pleading and plaintive vocal by Nicole Smith, to the psychedelic blues stomp, “Lying,” originally by the archetypical psychedelic soul band nearly signed to Motown, Black Merda. Add in Kelly’s monster vocal take on Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons Northern Soul classic, “Beggin” (to be released as a 7” single with an instrumental version on the b-side), and the deep-funk pop-soul of Nu People’s “I’d be Nowhere Without You” with backup vocals by Jeanine Jones and Veronica Johnson, and you have a highly-entertaining, toe-tapping, backbone-slipping, masterclass in deep funk and soul. The final tune is the band’s singular take on the Mamas and the Papas hippie standard, “California Dreaming,” as an explicit and heartfelt tribute to their fans in Greece. The discerning music lovers of Greece fell in love with Monophonics after their 2012 hit “Bang Bang” resulting in multiple tours of the Mediterranean, where these native Californians imbibed on the fine ouzo, good vibes, and Grecian hospitality. Gifted a prized bouzouki (a traditional Greek guitar) by a local fan, Monophonics’ guitarist Ian McDonald and band infused this classic pop song with a soulful cinematic air and Mediterranean flavor, evoking a tune from an imagined Fellini film with a soundtrack by David Axelrod.
Listen to “My Heart Cries” below:
Check out this previously-released music video for “My Heart Cries” by The Invincibles, featuring vocals by Nicole Smith:
Catch the band on the road this spring to hear some of these songs, favorites, and new tunes from their forthcoming EP. Get hyped with this tour video, followed by a complete itinerary, below.
MONOPHONICS TOUR DATES
02-06 @ HiFi Music Hall – Eugene, OR
02-07 @ Volcanic Theatre Pub – Bend, OR
02-08 @ Wild Buffalo – Bellingham, WA
02-09 @ Wonder Ballroom – Portland, OR
02-10 @ The Crocodile – Seattle, WA
02-11 @ The Crocodile – Seattle, WA
02-16 @ Sweetwater Music Hall – Mill Valley, CA
02-17 @ Sweetwater Music Hall – Mill Valley, CA
02-18 @ Crystal Bay Club – Crystal Bay, NV
02-21 @ The Top Hat Lounge – Missoula, MT
02-22 @ Rialto Bozeman – Bozeman, MT
02-24 @ Animas City Theatre – Durango, CO
03-02 @ Schmiggity’s Live Music Dance Bar – Steamboat Springs, CO
03-03 @ Cervantes’ Other Side – Denver, CO
03-08 @ Fox Theatre – Boulder, CO
03-09 @ Paradise Theatre – Paonia, CO
03-10 @ Sheridan Opera House – Telluride, CO
Enter To Win A Pair Of Tix To Denver + A Copy Of Mirrors On Vinyl!