Passion Pit
Manners


3.0
good

Review

by Caleb McAlpine USER (109 Reviews)
August 30th, 2009 | 104 replies


Release Date: 2009 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A jelly-filled electronic pastry of an album that oozes so many slick hooks that it's probably not suitable for human consumption... but can you resist?

Sometimes things can be just too cute. A warehouse full of kittens is bad investment because the kittens will love on each other and make more kittens which will in turn send your cat litter bills through the roof. In slightly more applicable terms, some pastries that are good on first bite turn out to be a lot of trouble when they overload your sensory systems with their sugary artillery of taste. What I'm getting at, in completely non-metaphoric terms, is that, musically, some things are just too darn cute to be taken seriously and some albums are too darn cheesy/happy/peppy to listen to entirely in one sitting. Passion Pit's Manners happens to be one of those albums; every song has a catchy hook and a "nifty" synth line and nearly every song works brilliantly on it's own (perhaps spliced into a playlist full of other artists) but as a whole, the record is tiresome.

That being said, the singular songs on Manners are irresistible. Nostalgic synth riffs and bombastic beats parade around the invasively catchy 'Little Secrets' while vocalist Michael Angelakos effeminately yelps the songs lead hook ("Let this be our little secret") over a cutesy children's choir ("Higher and higher and higher!") 'Moth's Wings' and 'The Reeling' work in a similar manner with their glitchy percussion and fuzzy synthwork and represent electronic-indie-pop at it's finest. It's however notable that the group struggles heftily with the concept of dynamic and variation (both things that would've made Manners more interesting) and it's obvious: the few times the band changes things up stylistically, it comes off as either obnoxiously annoying ('Sleepyhead') and enormously cheesy ('Folds in Your Hands'). It's also notable that Angelakos has such a high voice that he makes Geddy Lee sound like Frank Sinatra and, quite frankly, it gets annoying quickly. He wails, moans and yowls throughout the entire album which - when paired with his less-than-comprehensible lyrics ("My beard grew down to the floor and out the doors of your eyes") - amounts to more than half of the album's tiring moniker.

All in all, Manners is simply too much. It is overwhelming in it's failure to be varied and in it's faux-stylish indie-credibility, it gets unnecessary. However, when Passion Pit hit the right spots (before they overwelcomed the stay on the album), they hit them hard. Taking into consideration that Manners is also the band's first full-length album, it's easy to forget it's shortcomings and look forward to the future -- which is exactly what I suggest you do. Until then, just hold your tongue and wait.



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doug (4)
Passion Pit is like the filling in your ├ęclair, the cheese in your toasty or the cream with your st...


Comments:Add a Comment 
Waior
August 30th 2009


11461 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Review is more than 24 hours apart from my last one so anybody who complains about me having two on the front page is a scoundrel.

djdorama, help me fill out the "recommended by reviewer" section

robertsona
Staff Reviewer
August 30th 2009


15082 Comments


LP - Discovery

Whatever that 2008 Album Was - Cut Copy

something by phoenix

something by matt and kim

thats about it

the reeling rules but thats all i remember from this

nice review

Prophet178
August 30th 2009


6397 Comments


An jelly-filled


? :P

robertsona
Staff Reviewer
August 30th 2009


15082 Comments


keep that typo it rules

also throw in that new mew album if u want

edit: also, not gonna lie, these metaphorical first paragraphs are getting a little out of hand. just a tip ;D

Waior
August 30th 2009


11461 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

these metaphorical first paragraphs are getting a little out of hand


Noticing that myself. Thanks for the name dropping though.



robertsona
Staff Reviewer
August 30th 2009


15082 Comments


oh, btw, the artist is discovery and the album is LP, woops

illmitch
August 30th 2009


5429 Comments


these guys played a show at an event at my university, but i was busy

Waior
August 30th 2009


11461 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

The problem is that I keep reviewing the same album over and over again (in a way) and I'm having trouble finding news ways to say the same thing, you know? The Oh Sleeper review came really naturally, as did the new Noah and the Whale simply because I wasn't just reiterating myself. I'll work on that.



Kiran
Emeritus
August 30th 2009


6002 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

album is so fun

i'm shocked you don't like sleepyhead though and don't mention swimming in the flood in your section about stylistic variation, as that song rules

robertsona
Staff Reviewer
August 30th 2009


15082 Comments


well a fun thing i like to do is go through one of those 'new releases' lists and review a completely random album from that

or find another randomizer way

e.g. go to allmusic.com, go to their moods section, find a mood that sounds interesting, and pick one of the recommended albums


Waior
August 30th 2009


11461 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

or find another randomizer way


Right now I'm just kind of filling in holes in the database and reviewing new releases as they come. I'm going to review the new Boys Like Girls next week because it's out of my comfort zone and that will be fun (I hope).

i'm shocked you don't like sleepyhead though


Not the worst song on the album but it's not good. At all.

sgrevs
August 30th 2009


698 Comments


Nice review. I'm not really a fan of the band, but I think that 'Sleepyhead' is an excellent song, hands down their best.

klap
Staff Reviewer
August 30th 2009


10583 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

WOW cant believe this didnt have a review already. i'm a little drunk, ok a lot but this reads well in the 40 seconds i perused it in. shame on dj for referring to the classic cut copy albumas "that 2008 album." and discovery sucks, for the record.

Digging: Charli XCX - Sucker

klap
Staff Reviewer
August 30th 2009


10583 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

also, something by phoenix? kil yourself

robertsona
Staff Reviewer
August 30th 2009


15082 Comments


wat

is the problem that they dont sound enough a like and that was a dumb suggestion or that i referred to it as 'something' when i should have referred to it as ~Your Almighty Album By the Beautiful Phoenix~

MisterBeefy
August 30th 2009


244 Comments


album is pretty boring

Romulus
August 30th 2009


8447 Comments


I have only heard Sleepyhead and it's pree nice. Great review though.

Kiran
Emeritus
August 30th 2009


6002 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

if you enjoy sleepyhead, you should give this a try!

Skyler
August 30th 2009


1084 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Make Light has been stuck in my head for like 3 weeks now.

klap
Staff Reviewer
August 30th 2009


10583 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

the fact that they don't sound like passion pit :/ sorry i was less than sober and my comments came off as quite rude. i respect your opinions Mr. Robertson and you are a shining beacon of light in this dark hole of reviewing waste



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