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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Review: Mission Hill - Mission Hill

Mission Hill - Mission Hill
2009, Toucan Cove Entertainment

Boston quartet Mission Hill has built up a significant fan base gigging relentlessly on the East Coast over the past few years. Shows with Candlebox, The White Tie Affair and Secondhand Serenade have served to widen their fan base, but it's the music that wins over fans' hearts and minds. Introspective and self-conscious by nature, Mission Hill speaks from the heart on their debut EP, Mission Hill. Mission Hill was recently ranked number one on Alternative Addiction's "Top Ten Unsigned Bands" list, and lead vocalist Adam Jensen won an LA Music Award for Indie Male Vocalist Of The Year. I suspect that such accolades are only the tip of the iceberg.

Mission Hill opens with This Town, reflecting on a relationship gone wrong and the difficulty of moving on. The narrator is on the verge of wanting reject all he knows to get away from all things familiar and escape the pain of losing her. While Jensen sounds nothing like Michael Stipe (more like a deeper voiced Rob Thomas), there's a definite REM connection here. Forever Anyway is an autobiographical tune about Jensen's love for his hometown that takes on an almost Americana flavoring. The vocal harmonies here are phenomenal, and the melody is one that will get stuck in your brain. Long Time Comin' is a goodbye song. The narrator has finally had enough and is saying goodbye. The song is incredibly well written and could have potential as a Country tune as well as the Rock/Americana arrangement it's presently in. Don't be surprised to see this song licensed for a soundtrack somewhere down the line. The best songwriting on the disc is still to come, however. Jen (When I Grow Up) is one of the most mature and introspective love songs you're likely to come across. This is a definite mix-tape song, though with limited application. If we did a song of the year category here at Wildy's World this would have to be in the discussion. Ending with Down With Young Love, Mission Hill rocks out for all they're worth; an impressively high-energy tune that I suspect is a big time favorite in the live show.

Mission Hill seems destined to transcend their regional status and become a band with national recognition. The quality of the songwriting and musicianship combined with the front-man presence of Adam Jensen would make them a sure thing in a perfect world. Regardless, Mission Hill is very much worthy of your rapt attention. This is great stuff!

Rating: 4.5 Stars (Out of 5)

You can learn more about Mission Hill at or You can purchase Mission Hill EP digitally from iTunes. Physical CDs do exist, but I could find no outlet online. Message Mission Hill at their MySpace page for more information if interested.


Scott said...

only a 4.5 out of 5? i vote 7 out of 5. kids legit. 2legit2quit

STACE said...

I love these guys...GO MISSION HILL!!