Mlee Marie is Hearts of Animals. A native Houstonian who writes and plays original songs that range from dreamy psychedelic rock-y to melancholy folk-y to garage-y punk-y to drone-out sax loops. Depending on what musical whimsey she is feeling she may do a show with a full live band or solo with an i-pod, or a show with a saxophone and a loop pedal and maybe a flute?
Mlee has appeared on recordings by and collaborated with Young Mammals, The Mathletes (Joe Mathlete), and The Linus Pauling Quartet. She also performs as the White Strips – a White Stripes tribute band – with artist/husband Chris Cascio. She has had the honor of performing on drums as part of a hand-picked ensemble of musicians to accompany Daniel Johnston for a performance in 2012. She has also played with artists such as Fiery Furnaces, Casio Tone for the Painfully Alone, and Nat Baldwin (of Dirty Projectors). Additionally she has performed at Free Press Summerfest in 2009 and as a showcasing artist at SXSW in 2008.
Releases : S/T (7″ EP, 2008, Dull Knife), Cave Lights (CD, 2009, ArtStorm Records), Lemming Baby (CDR 2007, Digital 2013, Self Released), Another Mutation (CD, 2014, Homeskool).
“…soars through the same jet stream as Amos & Sara or Family Fodder. Really terrific diy dub/psych minimalism & it might be the 1st record to come outta Houston that I kinda like since Charalambides split that swamp.” – Siltblog (Siltbreeze Records)
“…a natural bridge between straightforward indie pop traditions and some more daring territory….Very excited to hear more of what she’s doing.” – Doug Mosurock, Dusted Magazine
“Mlee Suprean (aka Hearts of Animals) creates a perfect mix of lush starry-eyed dream pop and stuttered homegrown electronics… delightfully sweet but deceptively dense at the same time. Her swirling take on shoegaze is just perfect for the cool green shades of the upcoming Spring…” – Insound Newsletter
“drifty-dreamy female vocals layered onto spiky-chiming guitars that are sashay-picking their way thru that same sunny field that Ray Davies and Co. are waltzing thru inside the gatefold of Village Green Preservation Society… Most twee-skirting indie pop barely makes it thru the was for me, but this makes my mood feel a mite bit…pink.” – Ryan Wells, Z Magazine
“Softly original, delicately collapsing, blissfully expanding, could this be what pop sounds like in five or twenty or a hundred years? Hearts of Animals make a joyful noise, one I have not heard before. This is not rock. But it might be a cure.” – Eclecticat- mp34u.muzic.com
“There’s room for a little bit of everything in HOA, yet the music never feels like a kitchen-sink contrivance. Superb songcraft and a delicate touch allow her to create music that is at once astonishingly heavy and gossamer-light; under her spell, seemingly disparate concepts and styles play nicely with one another. Dense noise provides the perfect foil for power-pop sugar; cheaply effective Casio beats underscore stabbing waves of pseudo-shoegaze psychedelia. This is musical magical realism to turn Gabriel García Márquez green-eyed with envy.” — Nicholas L. Hall, Houston Press
“With Hearts of Animals, singer/songwriter Mlee Marie Suprean has managed to create something very cool and unique, at least within our insular little Houston scene. I mean, we’ve got a metric ton of folkies with guitars, enough to re-populate Lilith Fair several times over, but Suprean’s thrown the whole idea on its head by incorporating huge-ass washes of distortion, weird electronic beats, and electronic vocal effects, and the result is pretty impressive. To me, at least, the sound brings to mind vintage dreampop, particularly My Bloody Valentine and the Jesus & Mary Chain, but with Suprean’s quirky, Eisley-esque vocals floating over the top.” – Space City Rock
“Mains is now on her third critically-acclaimed album, and 2007’s Lemmings Baby is required listening for any fan of recent Houston music. Understandably, she has a bigger sound by now, and though that echo-y emptiness is still there, it throbs in a cosmic way like a good Breeders record. Seriously, no one else on the planet could write a song like “Porn From the Seventies” and make it this mind-bogglingly beautiful. In only six lines (that’s all the lyrics it’s got), Mains does things to your perception of beauty and love and sex and affection that is just indescribable.” – Jef With One F, Houston Press
“Another Mutation is a funny title for Hearts of Animals’ third full-length album. No two of its lo-fi, sweet but melancholy songs are quite the same, but all are recognizably the work of the young woman who offstage goes by the name of Mlee Marie Mains. Mlee/Hearts of Animals (pronounced “Emily” and “Hearts of Animals”) has been a dependable presence in Houston’s indie scene since 2007, when just about every music-loving site in town including this one flipped its collective wig over her self-released short LP/extended EP Lemming Baby.” – Chris Gray, Houston Press