What do De La Soul, Taio Cruz and Beverly Knight all have in common? They have all toured with Mama’s Gun. Who exactly Mama’s Gun are you ask. Well, they are a Brit-Soul band from London who have been together for three years and now, in this year of 2010 it seems people have started to take notice of Andy Platts and his fellow Mama’s Gun members. An article from The Sunday Times earlier this year certainly helped Mama’s Gun status rise and rave reviews from various online publications have also added to the good press surrounding them. Its not all been good however, some reviews for this very double A side have not been the best and The Guardian weren’t exactly complementary in their “New Band” segment concerning Mama’s Gun. After listening to both “Wishing” and “Finger On It”, the opinion formed, is somewhere in between the two highly opinionated publications above.
“Wishing” is the first single pondered and it is a slow melody of R n B mixed with a few pop elements that sounds less like James Brown and more like one of today’s chart regulars such as Lemar. In short, there isn’t much soul or funk music being served up here, but instead a big slice of generic pie that doesn’t stand out much from the usual chart music of today. The target audience, which is surely the 30 something women of this world, will most probably enjoy it, just as they enjoy the work of artists such as Beverley Knight and so forth. Lyrically it doesn’t offer much other than the usual theme of love and heartache, which makes “Wishing” seem rather predictable.
Second single on the double A side is “Finger On It” which it has to be said, is better than “Wishing”. Featuring the more funk/soul based side of Mama’s Gun’s music; “Finger On It” has a rather catchy beat that sounds like something between Prince and Jamiroquai. It may not be as good as either of these artists but it does have a good rhythm that captures the listeners attention. The vocal performance from Platts is also better here, showing that the lead singer can most definitely hold a note or too. “Finger On It” also has a degree of passion and intent about it, an intent to be different and not follow the conventional paths of R n B or pop music. Quirky, soulful and fresh, “Finger On It” is the better of the two songs presented on this double A-side.
What Mama’s Gun have done here is make a CD that shows the two sides to their sound and without doubt there is one clear winner. “Finger On It” beats “Wishing” on all fronts and whilst the two tracks are meant to be very different to each other, “Wishing” just doesn’t have enough originality about it to be exciting. “Finger On It” however does have these key ingredients and with it, Mama’s Gun have showed in this song what they are capable of if they stick to their soul/funk roots. Lets just hope in the future that they stick to these roots, rather than reside in the shade of someone else’s.
Original article first appeared on Altsounds website on 21/06/10