As a general rule of thumb, I dislike two things: the condiment mustard and the state of Florida. However, there are some exceptions to the rule. For example, Wynwood kinda rocks and the band Mustard Service definitely makes me proud to be a Floridian. The group, composed of five Miami natives, has shown me that South Florida’s indie rock scene doesn’t suck as much as I originally thought, though even some of Mustard Service’s own band members have lamented how pitiful the music scene can be for up and coming artists (I’ll stop being dramatic and shitting on the state of Florida now).
Populating a genre they have titled “zest pop”, which also happens to be the title of their debut album, their music incorporates a lot of funky jazz and beach rock elements. This, along with lead singer Marco Ochoa’s smooth and silky vocals make for an excellent time, and I for one cannot wait to be able to see these boys live preferably at a time when my governor hasn’t subjected us all to death at the hands of a global pandemic in order to enjoy live music venues once more. From my personal viewpoint, the best way I could describe Mustard Service’s songs is smooth and laidback. These guys definitely pass the mf vibe check, but what else would you expect from a group of twenty-year-olds who got their band name from a band name generator? They very much embody the spirit of their music and seeing their continued success truly makes me happy. Their sound is so vibrant and versatile, you could fire off one of their songs anywhere and people would love to hear it. House party? Queue up some Mustard Service. Long car ride? Queue up a couple of Mustard Service songs. At your locally owned coffee shop trying to impress indie rock fans? Talk about Mustard Service and you’ll definitely rank up amongst your fellow hipsters, like what I do when I jack the aux cord at Starbucks and play my own music (please don’t fire me, the customers like the music, too). The possibilities are endless, and the vibes are always good when Mustard Service plays.
It’s a bit strange how Mustard Service’s music comes off as so laid back and nonchalant, yet still so exuberant and full of energy at the same time. Their website bio describes them as “five boys looking for a good time.” and their music definitely gives off that feeling, and even better, makes for a good time. Listening to their newest album, C’est la vie, I get the overwhelming feeling I’m listening to elevator music that was jacked on steroids and didn’t suck. Now the phrase “elevator music” may have negative connotations, but just think about the effort that would go into making elevator music NOT suck and actually make you wanna bob your head along with the bass line. Yeah, exactly you judgmental prick. And while the songs “Need”, “Pleasantries”, “Getting There” and “Daddy Dookie Brown” almost persuaded me to write an album review, I instead chose to write about how awesome they are as a unit. Besides, It’d be a crime not to mention songs off their last album, such as my personal favorite of theirs “Taking Up Space” and “Get Fucked” and while I myself have not had the honor of attending one of their live shows, many have also commented on the contrasting dynamic between their chill songs and energetic stage presence, so I would love to see it.
Amidst the beaches, cafeterias, and hordes of feral alligators that populate the desolate wasteland of South Florida, five dudes have emerged as some pretty awesome musicians. Listening to their music, I can’t help but be a little proud I can claim that the place I grew up in did bring up some kick-ass music, and help alleviate some of my young adult angst. So if you ever find yourself chilling at a Mustard Service concert, just know Florida can offer you more than oranges and a nice place to retire.
Listen to their latest record, below.
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