Mind Over Matter is the debut album from one of the most formidable up-and-coming acts in recent years, Lethbridge Owen. Completely uncategorizable, the duo have created an album that simultaneously incorporates and defies just about every genre going to produce an album that is quite frankly perfect.
Lead by the singer-songwriter duo Jimmy Owen and Kelly Louise Lethbridge the band has created some of the most complex and beautiful amalgamations of sound that we have ever come across. Incorporating fusions from rock, indie, folk, pop, funk, jazz, blues, prog and so, so much more, their music is an absolute maelstrom of sound – spotting each and every delicate attribute would take weeks of listening to identify and extrapolate each twist and turn of their chords. Driven primarily by the hard hitting guitar melodies provided by Owen their music is akin to something Jimi Hendrix might have made if he’d had a design on a folk-inspired pop career. Their music is bold, brazen and absolutely striking. Songs like Re-Inspire are invigorating melodies with rich guitar solos that you could expect to find hidden in Guitar Hero. Owen’s dextrous fingers making light work of deep and complex riffs that change the tone of their work with the motion of just one string.
The soulful and powerful nature of their music is reason enough to love them but then we have the vocals. Each with their own unique traits, the duo both bring something special to the table. Owen has a soft and earnest voice that is overflowing with passion. It’s a striking voice that harmonises perfectly with his counterpart but Lethbridge has a voice that could turn the tables on anyone. Smooth, rich and so phenomenally soulful, Lethbridge has a voice that anyone would envy. It spreads through their music like sunshine, warming everything it touches. It is impossible not to fall in love with the sound of her voice. And when it is overlaid with their resplendent and experimental cacophony of sound and harmonises with that of Owen it comes close to a religious experience. You can sit back, close your eyes and listen to this album all day.
Any debut album has an excuse for making a mistake or two, perhaps a tune that isn’t quite right yet but not Lethbridge Owen; they have gotten everything perfect on their very first try. This is far from a stroke of luck, the pair have worked ceaselessly to create this album and it is an absolute and unarguable masterpiece.
Review by Joe Knipe