Messy Century

Ahhh, variety—it is the spice of life. Just ask Liverpool, England's Mountaineers.

Ahhh, variety—it is the spice of life. Just ask Liverpool, England's Mountaineers. Much like the debut earlier this year from fellow chameleon-like Brits A Band of Bees, the first full-length effort from this quirky three-piece is a smorgasbord of shifting sounds and styles. "Messy Century" finds the trio dabbling in everything from Air-style French electro-pop ("Apart From This") and "Yellow Submarine"-era Beatles ("U.K. Theater") to Beta Band-esque electronic-folk ("Ripen"). None of this is exactly a revelation. But Mountaineers are a band long on eccentricities and charm. "Messy Century" is filled with enough winning change-ups to qualify it as a sleeper treat.—BG