Ignorance is bliss. Except, of course, when it comes to music. Sometimes, you miss out on cool shit. Which, in turn, is even worse for its creators; quality songs go unnoticed day after day, failing to make it into the hands of the right people. The Mandates, already extremely well-received in Western Canada, are just beginning to crack the shell of the rest of the globe. A band so sharp, that even though their songs are chock full of hooks (this band is nothing but hooks), when you catch them live, the entire set is spent watching them feed off each other, focusing on how truly talented each member is. The sheer technical ability of this group is mesmerizing. And, let’s be clear: we’re talking slick, punk-fueled, power pop. A subgenre that already has no room for imperfections. You need to be competent—tight as all fucking hell. And well, these guys fit right in. Now, while these Albertans fit right in with their obvious Canadian counterparts (Tranzmitors, White Wires, Sonic Avenues, Statues, and so on), there’s something inherently different about them. The aforementioned groups have a reputation for sounding Canadian, while The Mandates sound like they’re from New York. I mean, don’t get me wrong, they still sound a lot like their Canuck brothers. But, I’d be more inclined to compare The Mandates to the New York Dolls, the Sorrows, the Dictators and maybe even the Stitches, at times. But, faster and even, dare I say, tighter. More Dead Boys than Pointed Sticks, if you catch my drift. Bands get looked over every day out of laziness, oversaturation, and new trends. The Mandates are beyond worthy of your time. Given half a chance, you’ll be singing the outro-chorus to “She’s Walkin’ Over” over, and over, and over, again.
–Steve Adamyk (Mammoth Cave, mammothcaverecording.com)