- Words Notion Staff
Plain Mister Smith has released his beguiling debut album, 'I'm Just Plain Mister Smith'.
Plain Mister Smith is a musical mystery by design. With his knowingly commonplace, everyday name, the artist has used his anonymity to create a platform for beguilingly experimental work, its universality helped by the possibility that its creator could just about be anyone (it’s actually Vancouver musician Mark Jowett, but shh!).
It’s a difficult task to summarise one’s identity when the identity is an intentional mystery, but Plain Mister Smith has done just that with his debut album, titled ‘I’m Just Plain Mister Smith’. Across its nine tracks, Plain Mister Smith traverses the gamut of what indie music can be, blending folksy acoustics with futuristic synths and everything in between, all underscored by layered, self-reflexive songwriting.
The album also recruits alter ego-free collaborators Jocelyn Price and Jordan Klassen, whose soulful vocals lend a cuttingly specific edge to the universal, wide-ranging sounds pioneered by Mister Smith, such as on the Price-featuring lead single, “Satori Space”.
On the album, Plain Mister Smith says, “I’m Just Plain Sister Smith album is a dog’s breakfast of lyrical jewels, exploring alien arrivals, self-loathing and delusion, seduction in space, and cat cafes in Osaka. Sonically the music creeps and rolls along and soars too, and sometimes the guitars and strings and keyboards are lush and pastoral, on top of which Jordan Klasen and Jocelyn’s Prices’ vocals can intermesh and hypnotise. Maybe there’s something here for music obsessives, who like their music a little pop but rogue too, where you never quite know what lies around the next sonic corner”.