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Midnight Manor - Single Review: Space Monkey

06 Apr 2020 // A review by Steve Shyu

Auckland quartet Midnight Manor have been kicking around the rock scene for nearly eight years. Sporting a healthy number of singles under their belts, plus a full-length album to boot, the band have not rested on laurels, and released a brand new sophomore LP, named Mindful Games. The flagship single Space Monkey is now also available, and Muzic.net.nz's Steve S. got to step inside the simian rocketship.

A bluesy rock-n-roll guitar solo opens the song, set to a mid-tempo hard rock rhythm. The chunky, two-note guitar strokes of each bar provides a decent beat to nod along with and lasts throughout the track. There are touches of stoner rock vibes, and immediately reminds one of speedy road trips on a warm summer’s day. Or taking a trip in a rocketship, since everyone’s on lockdown and can’t travel!

Frontman Tommy Rock’s vocals are reminiscent of 70’s and 80’s rock singers, somewhere between John Fogerty and Ozzy Osbourne. A certain smokiness in his voice gives the song character and gives each listen a great flavour. However, the secret weapon on this song is really the solid beats of the drums, coupled with hopping basslines, that really drive from beginning to end.

Whilst appearing to illustrate in third person a primate’s adventures away from Earth, thematically, the song focuses on human ambition and exploration, namely in outer space. This is affirmed in the Soundcloud song description, where the words “WE are the ultimate Space Monkeys” boldly assert its philosophy. Keeping in the vein of 80’s hard rock, the lyrics are straightforward, and great for singing along to.

The sampled old-timey countdown from ten to “We have ignition” is a nice touch. There are twinkles of light keyboards in the background, adding to the impression of space-travel. The production on this track is polished and classy, presenting guitars and vocals at the fore. Speaking of which, that vibrant guitar solo that first pops up at the beginning is reintroduced and allowed to flourish right before the final chorus. A none-too-technical affair, the guitarist lets individual notes do the work, instead of over-complicating the music.

Make sure you get this song in your ears if 80’s blues rock is your style, and check out Midnight Manor’s newest album, Mindful Games, on Apple Music and Spotify.

Rating: ( 4 / 5 )

About Midnight Manor

Midnight Manor are a band with no limits playing Rock, Alternative Rock, Melodic Ballads, Instrumentals, Pop Rock, Alternative Country, Folk, Folk Rock & Theatrical Rock.
Their debut album House of Cards is out now and their new album Mindful Games is due out in December 2019.
Happy Listening :)

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Midnight Manor


Midnight Manor
Year: 2016
Type: Album

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