LANY’s new album, mama’s boy, reflects upon the ups-and-downs of growing up in an inconsistent environment

LANY's new album, mama's boy, reflects upon the ups-and-downs of growing up in an inconsistent environment

In truth, LANY was a band with minimal songs peppered throughout my everyday playlists. Prior to listening to their new album, mama’s boy, I thought of them in the sense of a few hit songs but nothing more.

As I sat down to listen, mama’s boy took both my ears and heart by storm. “you!” is the first song of the album, and it set a mild tempo and hopeful tone for the rest of the tracks. This was the band’s third-most-popular song on the album, yet I was confused as to why it had earned this claim-to-fame.

This song does an exemplary job of giving a preview for the energy of the entire album, but, upon listening multiple times, I never really found it to be all that enticing of a piece. Also, the tone of the album shifts a bit from this main focus of a positive outlook on childhood to a more negative connotation of the former.

The loss of focus hurts the impact of the first song once the entire album is enjoyed, but as a single, I can see it deserves the popularity it has gained.

Moving to the fourth track of the album—and my personal favorite—“if this is the last time” managed to surprise me with its sudden stroke of unspoken character pertaining to the band. 

Lyrics such as “Sorry for the fights and the tone of my voice/sorry for the nights that I made the wrong choice/life is flying by, and it’s hitting me now” really convey the pain of experience in the artist’s voice.

The warm notes of the guitar bring in reminiscence of happier times, such as an ode to growing up would do, but the lyrics blend in an ingenious way to match the tone of the instrumentals rhythmically. Yet only by paying close attention can the somber and regretful tone towards gaining wisdom be observed.

As the album progressed, I came upon songs that jump in time such as “paper.” This track leaps forward into the future, alluding to earlier songs like an extended metaphor.

“Paper” is a reflection piece used as a metaphor for a turbulent childhood. It shows how the ups-and-downs of growing up not only affect future relationships but also an adult’s treasuring of vanity in the face of a community.

Not only does this album vary track-by-track, but it is also versatile in the sense that it can be considered a new go-to sound for this new generation of music. It sits well and is not too heavy if you aren’t paying close attention, but each track’s meaning can also be deconstructed if the time is taken.”

The eighth track of the album, “sharing you,” addresses childhood insecurity. And, as far as who it addresses, I found that many of the songs could reflect a relationship—arguably—between a mother or a significant other.

This push and pull of questioning that the listener may go through can change the entire meaning of the album. Most likely it is probably a point being made about the parallels of one’s relationship with their parents as a child and what kind of relationships they seek out as they grow older (hence a mix of both with the exception of a few songs that lean more one way than the other).

“Nobody else,” the final track of the album, is a reflection of the artist’s reliance on other people. Not only does this wrap up the album perfectly through its final thoughts on attachment and dependence issues, but it is also one more final comment on the necessity of mother and wife. It is a final thank you to the fortunes of having, at least, one reliable person in the artist’s life—a final acknowledgment with a voice of appreciation.

LANY blends not only alternative rock but country-like undertones to create this album. This innovative type of music introduces a home-grown theme into the baselines of all the songs, but the alternative rock side keeps younger listeners engaged with the tracks as well.

In this album, there are layers of familiar and familial wallpaper, each peeling back to reveal another allusion to the similarities between current relationships and childhood experiences. As I picked on at the edges of the coatings, the ideas become less sophisticated and more abstract—seemingly all in an attempt to hide discomfort and disdain for the past.

Not only does this album vary track-by-track, but it is also versatile in the sense that it can be considered a new go-to sound for this new generation of music. It sits well and is not too heavy if you aren’t paying close attention, but each track’s meaning can also be deconstructed if the time is taken.