Sunday, January 28, 2024

Declan McKenna Takes on Wanderlust, Crime, and Love in Latest Release

Ushering in Declan McKenna’s 3rd album, to be released on February 9, ‘Mulholland’s Dinner & Wine’ follows a pair of self-indulgent outlaws. As unpredictable as a life of crime is, the song is filled with everything from philosophic ponderings to criminal flamboyancy. McKenna begins by announcing “I found love for the little things / I’m not satisfied with what I want”. As poetic as that may sound, things soon start to take a turn for the worse.

“We’ll take the golf cart into town, drive it around” is telling of the carefree attitude these characters possess. With a sense of childlike adventure, he sings “Just think of all the things we can do”. And surely something comes to mind because he suggests they can “Hold up some pubs and hopes it pays”. In a darkly humorous way, he goes on to demand “Give me a raise”.

‘Mulholland’s Dinner & Wine’ is a playfully twisted tale of two bandits. The foolhardy whims these two occupy themselves with present us with what almost seems to be a pair of caricatures. This isn’t your typical Bonnie and Clyde type of story. Declan and fellow songwriter Gianluca Buccellati drew some inspiration from driving around Mulholland Drive and attending trendy and peculiar parties. That’s probably where we get lines like “I’ve got a boring apartment and all of the drugs”.

There’s a seriously funky feel to the tune, which can be attributed to the loose plucking away of the guitar and Declan’s cool-as-a-cucumber voice. As the trumpet buzzes off in the beginning and at the end, the listener is transported to the cinematically grandiose Mulholland Drive in Los Angeles. There’s just something larger-than-life about the sounds and the way they come together on this one.

Larger-than-life is right, with lyrics such as “Got cosmic paper cuts, tearing me up”. It’s like Declan knows the karma he’s accumulating with all the reckless behaviour. It’s a good thing he goes from saying “I’m fucking dangerous/I get what I want” to admitting “It’s fucking dangerous to get what I want”.  ‘Mulholland’s Dinner and Wine’ is wild and whimsical but also raw and reflective. It’s a bridge between wanting the simple things in life and longing for dangerous thrills.  

This would be the perfect track to start an exhilarating crime film.



Vukile Ntsaba

Image: ‘Mulholland’s Dinner & Wine’ Official Cover

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