MCII by Mikal Cronin on Apple Music

10 Songs

EDITORS’ NOTES

Mikal Cronin (Moonhearts, Ty Segall) surprised some fans with his unabashed affection for '60s-style pop on his self-titled 2011 debut. Known for his hand in creating loud and grimy garage rock in those collaborations, Cronin stretches out to some pop-friendly territory when he's on his own. Though the noise factor makes frequent appearances, it's usually in the form of a clear melody or in colorful bursts between sweeter slabs of sounds. The first track, "Weight" throws open the doors to MCII with a familiar blast of scuzz-toned guitars. But they have a sunny disposition, and Cronin's melodic vocals sail breezily above the inarguably pretty, stripped-down bridges. The jangly guitar and semi-sweet violin on "Peace of Mind" veer near '70s pop-radio territory, while "Turn Away" pulls off the unlikely feat of blending '90s post-grunge and power pop. Cronin is a one-man band here, with visits paid by friends from Thee Oh Sees, Moonhearts, and Ty Segall himself, but MCII never feels myopic or lacking in ideas. Cronin is a force to watch.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Mikal Cronin (Moonhearts, Ty Segall) surprised some fans with his unabashed affection for '60s-style pop on his self-titled 2011 debut. Known for his hand in creating loud and grimy garage rock in those collaborations, Cronin stretches out to some pop-friendly territory when he's on his own. Though the noise factor makes frequent appearances, it's usually in the form of a clear melody or in colorful bursts between sweeter slabs of sounds. The first track, "Weight" throws open the doors to MCII with a familiar blast of scuzz-toned guitars. But they have a sunny disposition, and Cronin's melodic vocals sail breezily above the inarguably pretty, stripped-down bridges. The jangly guitar and semi-sweet violin on "Peace of Mind" veer near '70s pop-radio territory, while "Turn Away" pulls off the unlikely feat of blending '90s post-grunge and power pop. Cronin is a one-man band here, with visits paid by friends from Thee Oh Sees, Moonhearts, and Ty Segall himself, but MCII never feels myopic or lacking in ideas. Cronin is a force to watch.

TITLE TIME
3:50
2:55
2:33
3:52
4:06
3:43
2:50
3:31
5:07
4:45

About Mikal Cronin

Playing garage-accented pop that reveals more than a passing influence of indie rock from the 1980s and '90s, Mikal Cronin was raised in Laguna Beach, California, where as a teenager he developed a passion for both surfing and rock & roll. While attending Laguna Beach High School, he fell in with a handful of like-minded music fans and formed a band that played local parties. Cronin left California for a few years to attend Lewis & Clark College in Portland, Oregon, but returned to continue his education at the California Institute of the Arts. While attending CIA, he joined the surf-influenced garage band Charlie & the Moonhearts as bassist; they became simply the Moonhearts after the departure of drummer Charlie Moothart, and in 2010 the band released a self-titled album through Tic Tac Totally Records. Cronin also began collaborating regularly with Ty Segall, releasing a collaborative album, Reverse Shark Attack, in 2009 and playing in Segall's road band.

According to Cronin, his first solo album began as therapy after finally completing college and making his way into the real world; full of noisy pop and garage influences, the self-titled LP (featuring guest appearances by Segall, Moothart, and John Dwyer of Thee Oh Sees) was issued by Trouble in Mind Records in September 2011. While still playing with Segall, he released a second solo album, MCII, for Merge in the spring of 2013. He embarked on a solo tour after that, taking time during 2014 to write and record his third album. Adding some new instruments to the fold, including the traditional Greek instrument the tzouras, and making a concerted effort to make his sound "bigger," the album was split into halves, with one side straight-ahead pop songs and the other a thematically linked set of songs meant to tell Cronin's coming of age story. The record, titled MCIII, was released by Merge in the spring of 2015. ~ Mark Deming

  • ORIGIN
    Laguna Beach, CA
  • BORN
    Dec 26, 1985

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