By Maria Lubanovic, Staff Writer
[Tiny Engines; 2018]
Key Tracks: “Matriarch”, “Rosy”, “Milky Way”
Will This Do? is the second album by Long Neck, the stage moniker of New Jersey native Lily Mastrodimos, which has expanded into a full-fledged band. Though the album is short and simple, Long Neck pulls off a soulful and cohesive album that reaches for Jersey, cigarettes and all.
The album opens with a guitar riff and immediately cranks into a faster indie jam with “Mine/Yours”. Mastrodimos’ vocals blend perfectly with the tone of the guitars, as she eventually harmonizes with herself, showcasing both ends of her range. This is followed by “Elizabeth”, a sunny track where she sings about how men just keep letting her down. This is also the first of many tracks that mention New Jersey and how they want to go back there.
Long Neck doesn’t just succeed in high-tempo tracks; “Matriarch” is the closest thing that comes to a ballad style track, which Mastrodimos references. It is highlighted by piano chords and swirling background singing. “Lichen” breaks right out of the acoustic feeling by opening with a heavy, bass-centered riff. Mastrodimos’ full voice sings out “when you bury me, don’t put lilies in my fist, put a beer bottle there ‘cuz that’s how I lived” with so much conviction.
“Rosy” is moved right back into simple acoustics, opening with a lone guitar and vocals. It’s a track filled with optimism and light, and it feels very personal like someone is singing to you in your bedroom. After a riding drum beat, Mastrodimos requests that God takes her back to Jersey in “Love Letters”, a song that details her grandparents love story. It has a slight vintage feel appropriate to the lyrics.
“Hive Collapse” opens with a lone slow bass rhythm before it’s joined by Mastrodimos’ voice and speeds into a driving melody. It’s just fuzzy enough that it almost echoes a beehive. “Milky Way” leans into its guitar and bass riffs to keep up the tempo without feeling too forced. This track is one of the more heavy hitting tracks with a more rock inspired feel, especially through the screeching guitar solo.
“10,000 Year Old Woman” closes the album – a soft acoustic guitar base with Mastrodimos’ vocals floating over the top. She easily ascends and descends from her higher range as she sings “cigarette smoke lingers longer than you do”. Her voice is strong and as the track fades out, it leaves the listener wanting more.
Overall, this album shows a lot of range from Long Neck, with consistently good songwriting and musical backdrops. So sit back, drink a beer, and dream of Jersey.