On Stage

The Alcove


Named for a Chinese anti-anxiety drug that claimed to make men less aggressive, Mild Men is a band as steeped in its own absurdity as it is serious about exploring it. Death in front of the History channel, the wild abandon of internet rage, frenetic insomnia, the fallacy of “no regrets” and sleepwalking towards middle age all feature prominently in the songs that make up their debut album It Can Sink – a reference to, of all things, 90s megamovie Titanic.

But don’t let their fatalism fool you. Mild Men revel in every idiosyncrasy, every fumble, every brush with the void. Twisting call-and-response riffs around an off-kilter pop sensibility and distinctly British eccentricity, It Can Sink is a soaring celebration of futility that lifts you up with one hand and reaches for the antacid with the other, because ultimately it knows that the real joy of life lies in the desperate, joyous, embrace of its contradictions.