The Mammals can hear the Earth calling, and they’re asking us to listen. Why is the societal sorrow and political-environmental challenge in their new album, Nonet, so listenable? Our ears can hear it because it’s been composed with great care by two of folk-Americana’s most heartfelt topical songwriters and lovingly performed by an ensemble of nine bold musicians.
The Mammals are a warm-blooded party band with a conscience, led by songwriting multi-instrumentalists Mike Merenda and Ruth Ungar, with dynamic drummer Konrad Meissner and a rotating cast of their favorite bass and organists. Their live concerts are healing and inspirational. It’s not just the magic of their combined voices; Ruth Ungar’s remarkably soulful grace and Mike Merenda’s hushed and intimate ease, it’s also the lyrics themselves that strike deep, sparking unexpected smiles and full-room sing-alongs.
The title track of their 2018 album Sunshiner was nominated for Folk Alliance International’s Song of the Year. Their 2020 album Nonet is poised to make an even bigger connection with listeners worldwide, brimming with The Mammals’ unmistakeable hope and authenticity. Like a shimmering wall of sound, with sparkling piano and banjo, pulsing double-drums, and soaring fiddle and organ, their courageous dynamics will draw you in, lift your spirits, and renew your heart.
“The Mammals can head for their US home content in the knowledge that they delivered big style at the final gig of their UK tour. Hailed by many as Americana trailblazers, Ruth Ungar and Mike Merenda, happily married and exuding togetherness on stage, are also gently-mannered activists with well-crafted songs that successfully ask potent questions of politicians and raise issues to probe how we can improve the planet. They deliver their material persuasively and in an eloquent manner with enjoyment of their music underpinning the approach overall. The music is the motivator throughout… Their joyous mix of fiddle-led, frenzied ceilidh-style instrumentals, soft-light, late night ballads, a homespun song about their daughter, plus a capella gems round a single mic were irresistible, as a delighted crowd showed.” – Mike Ritchie, Celtic Music Radio UK
The Mammals will perform as a quintet: Ruth Ungar (fiddle, guitar, ukulele), Mike Merenda (guitar, banjo), Konrad Meissner (drums), Kevin Williams (keys), Robert Burke Warren (bass)