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Starlight Mints

Starlight Mints had its genesis in Norman, Oklahoma, just a few miles down Highway 35 from Oklahoma City, home of that now-legendary band of experimental pop pranksters The Flaming Lips, and a similar sense of delicious lunacy pervades both bands' music. Maybe it's something about Oklahoma.

Starlight Mints is a group of beautiful pop mutants: five oddballs whose love for archetypal pop music (the usual list: The Beach Boys, The Kinks, The Zombies, etc.) and AM radio has provided a rock-solid foundation for a whole bunch of inspired weirdness. Much of that weirdness comes out through the ample strings, samples, and synths which populate Starlight Mints' strange songs. As vocalist/guitarist Alan Vest sings one nasal nonsense verse after another, keyboards undulate and hiccup courtesy of Marian Love Nunez -- who also sings some backup vocals -- while cellos and violins appear out of nowhere to offer mournful commentary on the rest of the band's cheerful bizarro-pop. Together, drummer Andy Nunez and bassist Javier Gonzales provide the songs skeleton with bouncy rhythmic wanderings while guitarist Matt Goad goes on one peculiar distorted excursion after another. Maybe you could call it bubblegum psych. It all adds up to something very grand: one marvelous piece of orchestrated, catchy surrealism after another.

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