Lieutenant might be a solo endeavour from Foo Fighters bassist Nate Mendel, but anyone expecting the bouncy rock associated with his day job may be disappointed. While the Foos are known for their zany humour, Mendel always gave the impression of being the wallflower of the band, and If I Kill This furthers this assumption.
The album has alt.rock guests from bands such as Modest Mouse and Mendel’s now-defunct Sunny Day Real Estate, but the music is softer, more drawn to the airier end of the indie spectrum.
There are jangly twangs of folk and prog, and the songs occasionally veer into rockier territory with sunny vibes, and in particular, there are echoes of The Shins and The Alan Parsons Project. Mendel’s soft vocals set the tone and tempo, but his voice is so unassuming that it veers on passive and sounds like it’s presented almost with a shrug.
There is skill on display, but the album is unlikely to progress beyond background music./o:p