It’s no secret that SLC’s music scene is severely eclectic, and it’s all thanks to bands like Mowth, Milk Money and frick. that add their unique sounds to Utah’s musical landscape. Check them out for yourself for just $5 at Urban Lounge on August 18 (doors at 7 p.m., music at 8 p.m.). SLUG Localized is sponsored by Riso-Geist and Uinta Brewing.
Mowth is a band to be reckoned with. Their fierce charisma and laid-back attitude give them a unique outlook that is unadulterated by the harsh forces of life. Band members Jordan Clark (guitar), Rachel Clark (vocals), Callie Crofts (bass) and Zach Bryant (drums) have known each other for a number of years, forming friendships with one another before eventually forming the band they know and love. This punky, alternative rag-tag group of friends is full of authenticity and outrageous amounts of fun.
The members of Mowth were destined to be in the music scene—each one flaunting a gifted musical career and following the same dream of being in a band. It wasn’t until after Mowth found themselves recording together in the studio that the band came alive. Mowth’s influences bounce between each member’s tastes, many of which revolve around ’90s punk and grunge bands. “I was into … Garbage, Veruca Salt, Courtney Barnett, The Distillers and Bikini Kill,” says Rachel. “Let’s do something really fun and different; let’s get away from the digital realm and go back to rock and roll.”
“Music to me is therapy—when I’m on stage, it’s like just throwing down [and] getting out all the feelings, the emotions, the anger and just letting it rip through the crowd.”
Mowth’s sound is indeed a melting pot of musicality, but it’s not only music from which Mowth draws inspiration. As ex-Mormons, their first EP, New Religion, delves into the harsh reality of a prominent Utahn fate: What it’s like to find substance and purpose in life after exiting the LDS church. “It’s called New Religion because we basically had to leave a cult and start over from scratch,” says Rachel.
Each Mowth member has a distinct reason for the passion behind their playing, from seeking a therapeutic release to the connection with the crowd found at live shows. You might not always be able to make lemonade out of the lemons, but you can make music. “I think that life makes us feel stuck … sometimes, so making people feel any emotion is a win for me,” says Crofts. Rachel continues, “Music to me is therapy—when I’m on stage, it’s like just throwing down [and] getting out all the feelings, the emotions, the anger and just letting it rip through the crowd.” At other times Mowth acts as a musical buffer to combat the tireless routine of an everyday job. “These days, I’ve been so stuck in the engineering world that focusing on Mowth gives me a lot of joy,” says Jordan.
For Mowth, this year’s theme is success, with the band playing a string of local shows and out-of-state festivals as well as releasing new music and videos. “We had a great year with lots of memories, so let’s show it off,” says Crofts. Although there have been great highs, it’s not all sunshine and rainbows as a band for Mowth. “A lot of the time I do have the best job, but on the flip side, you get burnt out—the creative energy is just so spent some days,” says Jordan. Rachel adds, “Not only do you have to be the creators, but the businessmen, as well.”
“It’s called New Religion because we basically had to leave a cult and start over from scratch.”
Going forward, Mowth still has a ton of exciting things coming up. You can catch them playing shows around town or relentlessly working through the creation and promotion of their upcoming album, Vagabondage. “Our gratitude for the community that has welcomed us and let us have a place to express ourselves is beyond any measure,” says Rachel. You can catch Mowth live at SLUG Localized along with co-headliner Milk Money and opener frick. on August 18 at Urban Lounge for SLUG’s final Localized showcase at Urban before moving the monthly shows to Kilby Court. Find them on Instagram @thebandmowth and stream their music on Apple Music or Spotify.