SONG OF THE DAY: Mallrats (La La La) by The Orwells
Every note in “Mallrats (La La La),” a standout track off of The Orwells’ first LP Remember When, seems to drip with angst-ridden, pubescent sweat. Crafted by five 17-year-olds from suburban Chicago, the song feels like a giant middle finger blazing in remorseless glory, daring even the shyest of listeners to dive into a perspiration-filled moshpit and break a few toes. The song’s distorted vocals sound like they’re being shouted through a smoke-filled megaphone, and each “la la,” a lyric that in traditional contexts would inspire images of sunny, retro indie pop, somehow becomes satanically twisted, oozing with unbridled attitude and grit. The song is abrasive and raw, yet instead of being off-putting, it somehow harnesses its grimy spunk and transforms itself into an empowering and cathartic listening experience. Although it might be easy to write off The Orwells as another teenage punk experiment, what separates this song from other tormented adolescent anthems is that behind the blazing vocals and thrashing guitars, there lies a rare finesse that’s seldom honed by such a young band. Every second of this three-minute punk-pop gem is shrouded in cigarette smoke and doc-marten stomps, and if we’re being honest here, I’m not sure that going to the mall has ever felt so cool.
Love and astronauts,