The New Mendicants
The New Mendicants are Joe Pernice (Pernice Brothers, Scud Mountain Boys), Norman Blake (Teenage Fanclub) and Mike Belitsky (The Sadies). Pernice and Belitsky first met Blake in November, 2000, when the Pernice Brothers opened for Teenage Fanclub at the Astoria in London. Twelve years later, shortly after Blake had relocated to Toronto with his Canadian spouse — as Pernice himself had done years earlier – the two found themselves neighbors, and reconnected. A friendship and musical partnership formed at Joe Pernice’s kitchen table, with Mike Belitsky soon joining the duo as drummer.
Says Pernice: “…he said we should start a band together called The Mendicants. Well, I had literally one day earlier recorded a song called “The Mendicant” for the upcoming Scud Mountain Boys record. May God smite me if this is not the truth. I sent Norman the
demo, and he wrote back: ‘It’s fate’…. Within minutes of hanging out in my kitchen we were booking recording dates.”
The pair made their live debut with low-key public performances in a Toronto tavern, marked by plenty of wisecracking banter, open tunings and sublime pop smarts — the latter of which are, along with long-established songwriting chops, on full display in their debut release.
With 9 original tracks plus a cover of Sandy Denny’s “By The Time It Gets Dark,” Into the Lime delivers effervescent Hollies-style guitar pop laced with Simon and Garfunkelesque vocal interplay, served up with a side of lyrical humour and a delicious sprinkle of darkness.
Matthew Fiander of Popmatters writes, “The set can shift dynamically from stately folk to driving powerpop to lilting hazy tunes without showing its seams. The combination of Pernice’s melodic tendencies with Blake’s history in Teenage Fanclub is a perfect match.”