Winning over audiences internationally with their own brand of melodic rock, The Mentulls music transcends genres, landing plaudits from music fans & critics alike.
Currently promoting their third, critically acclaimed album Recipe For Change, a concept album with themes of redemption & navigating changes in life, The Mentulls are on a musical high.
The ‘change’ in the title reflects the underlying concept but also that it marks a new era for The Mentulls and a shift in style. There’s no better time to check out what this great British band have been cooking up.
A Back Story
Being brought up in a musical household, it was a natural step for brothers Andrew & Jamie Pipe to start writing music from a young age. Taking influence from the music they heard through their parents record collection, The Mentulls were formed in the autumn of 2008 while the two brothers were still in their mid teens.
Originally starting as a duo in and around their hometown of Guisborough in North Yorkshire, In initial concerts, the band were playing what Jamie describes as “mainly early original material, alongside covers of songs by Pink Floyd and other rock bands of the 1970s".
The by-now trio line up with added drummer, recorded several songs during this period, including a now scarce EP The Long Road To Home. Following the release of this EP, they took to the live circuit playing concerts and festivals across England.
In 2012 the band released their first album Time Flies, which received favourable reviews from several music journalists and publications. To promote the album the band toured in the United Kingdom and Netherlands, including several concerts with Focus, Bad Company founder Mick Ralphs and most frequently Wishbone Ash. In addition, major festival appearances followed suit alongside the likes of The Stranglers, Feeder & FM. Guitarist Andrew Pipe was also nominated for Young Artist of The Year in the British Blues Awards in 2012 & 2013.
By 2015, after near constant touring, the band released their second album Reflections via their own ProgBlues Music label to rave reviews. When reviewed in Rock Society Magazine, the journalist called Reflections "The best album I've heard this year by a country mile". Mastering the album was Ray Staff at George Martin's AIR Studios, who is best know for his work on many iconic albums by artists such as Led Zeppelin, David Bowie, Elton John, The Rolling Stones and Genesis. The track Time To Focus also received airplay on BBC Radio 2. “It’s quite a feat" Andrew says, “to have a six and a half minute instrumental track to be played prime time on national radio”.
After two more years of regular touring in the UK and Europe, the band took a break in 2017 and immersed themselves in other projects like The Pipe Brothers Project which included the brothers working with members of 10cc, Jethro Tull & Gary Moore’s band.
Before the band’s return from hiatus, vocalist and multi instrumentalist David Neil Crabtree joined The Mentulls as lead vocalist in late 2018. They returned to the live arena in 2019 playing several sold out concerts.
A Recipe For Change
With Crabtree’s added influence and the brothers’ drive to soak up new musical flavours, writing for The Mentulls' third album Recipe For Change began, although ideas from several years before helped shape some songs. When talking to Prog Magazine, Andrew said that the album "became a concept album really without wanting it too" and features a suite of songs based around the story of someone with a hectic, pressure filled life who yearns for a simpler life in the country. The album which was mostly written and recorded during the 2020 pandemic lockdown meant meetings and writing sessions had to conducted over the internet. When asked in an interview for Classic Rock Magazine about this way of working, Andrew says, “For us, working over Zoom calls was more collaborative than usual, and it really paid off ”.
The album's lead single Easy To Walk Away was released in August 2021, receiving airplay on Planet Rock Radio, with members of the music press praising the band’s revamped sound, incorporating influences of melodic rock and progressive rock.
The finished album, was released in October 2021, with the Recipe For Change Tour commencing in March 2022.