Published Nov 17, 2009Comprised of a guy from Brooklyn (Mike from Blank Dogs) who makes spooky post-punk and a gal (Dee Dee from Dum Dum Girls) from L.A. who makes summery '60s garage, the Mayfair Set are music's quintessential yin-yang. Both enjoy shellacking their songs in distortion and reverb, so as a duo, their two halves unite, sounding like the sum of their respective solo work. This CD compiles their two releases so far: the Young One EP and a self-titled seven-inch. If there's a stronger presence, it's definitely Mike, who favours his soaked production over the buzz saw noise Dee Dee often favours. But he's careful to tweak the uncanny vibe of Blank Dogs for her vocals, like he does on "Already Warm," which lives up to its name by radiating sunny harmonies via the tandem vocals and jangly guitars to permeate the dense layers. Meanwhile, "Junked!" puts the spotlight almost entirely on Dee Dee, letting her vocals soar in unison with Mike's corresponding one-string riffs. Aside from this being eight songs of bewitching boy-girl harmonies dripping in echo and hiss, this makeshift mini-album presents Mike and Dee Dee as an ideal collaborative couple on their way to joining the likes of Lee and Nancy or Kenny and Dolly.
How did the two of you first meet?
Mike: We actually first met in person in July. We'd already recorded eight songs together and I'd released a Dum Dum Girls EP already for her, but we'd never met in person. We'd talked a lot on the phone though. We met for maybe 35 seconds before the first practice. Strange.
Dee Dee: Yes, very strange. I'm pretty shy, so we took baby steps; we went from emailing to texting to phoning to playing a show. Mind you, I was a fan of Blank Dogs so I was even more weirded out.
Was the idea to get your two sounds to mix or did it just turn out that way?
Dee Dee: Mike writes music really different from mine, but it is a perfect backdrop for me to sing over, and because it's unlike Dum Dum Girls, it lets me come up with melodies that I'd never otherwise stumble upon.
What is the creative process like?
Mike: There's no set rule. Dee Dee?
Dee Dee: No rules!
What made you decide to release this compilation?
Mike: We worked really hard on those songs and I think they came out great. Right now we're working on new material and it'll take as long as it has to, so this is what's there in the meantime. (Captured Tracks/Woodsist)