In May 2019 Mellie was formed as a band in Leipzig. Straight out of their own imaginary Mid-90ies, Mellie is a Noise-Pop-Trio that grinds up Baby Stereolab and Blonde Redhead into unforeseeable mild-but-loud Avant-Pop-Songs. The music was praised for their ‘quirky Avant-Pop’ and lightweight. Sonic-Youth-Remembrances’. The songs own a ‘gentle Olympia-Vibe, having Acts from K Records or Kill Rock Stars in mind.’ After playing two handfuls of shows they release their first EP ‚Have Head’ at Flennen collective (Berlin, flennen.bandcamp.com) and RDS REC. HH (Hamburg, rdsrechh. bandcamp.com).
On the one hand, “Have Head” is about the daily, top-heavy brooding that keeps us from the fashionable “just do it”. On the other hand, “Have Head” is also about loss, closure, ending, disappointment and dealing with it constructively. So this release is not one of the light, fluffy kind, but it is a far more resonant one. Mellie doesn’t claim that finding your own way is easy.
In fact, Mellie seems to think that the most important thing is the togetherness, the interplay, the interlocking, the everyone-in-the-strength-of-what-he-can-do. The songs have a beautiful but unworldly harmony that almost makes you forget the thoughtfulness of the lyrics. The playful bass lines, the often broken but stormy-clear drumming carry the music fully forward, only to change again immediately to strangely floating, then suddenly furious guitar harmonies. Julia’s voice seems to bring these fragments into captivating harmony. After the early end of her previous band project, she was often forced to deal with the difficult time of transition from something past to something new, as in the song “Concept”: We had no idea of things to come, we were looking for a sentence, a sentence that says more than we know’. This can be understood both personally and on a larger scale.
Their themes initially seem to be rooted in deep, personal experiences, but are then deformed into poetic-generic – and sometimes ironic – truths, only to end up as criticism or an attempt to formulate the classic ‘fail’: ‘You’re definitely out here on your own, I don’t see why this fun has to stop, you and your friends: it seems to make sense’. The often-lamented problems with growing up are given a stage in many of the songs on ‘Have Head’ – a record that acknowledges that this plays a major role in their generation. But Mellie doesn’t get comfortable in that fact. Inastead, the message is to demand choices, or in other words: to accept that pain can also be fun.