Max Bemis and The Painful Splits
Max Bemis and The Painful Splits 2


2.5
average

Review

by Nevin USER (56 Reviews)
April 18th, 2011 | 31 replies | 7,151 views


Release Date: 2011 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Bemis ditches the irony for his new mistress: reverb.

3 of 3 thought this review was well written

I was always under the impression that Max Bemis was the epicenter of everything that made Say Anything so fantastic. However, since the release of his recent solo albums under the moniker of Max Bemis and the Painful Splits, I've begun to rethink that stance. Instead of these records being a chip off the old block with biting lyricism and energetic cynicism, we're greeted with what appears to be the appearance of Bemis' awkward alter ego. It began with the self-titled LP in 2010 -- an undeniable disappointment, but overall not an entirely terrible effort for Bemis dipping his toes in the water. The music was a lo-fi, acoustic jumble of a record with the overarching theme of 'keep it simple, keep it safe,' with the lyricism never stretching beyond the boundaries of Bemis' latest works. Since then came the sequel with a name as simple as its contents, Max Bemis and the Painful Splits 2.

The basic outline for each track on the album is as follows: establish the basic chord progression immediately and enter Bemis with lyrics consisting of self-conscious tales of his adulthood and/or love songs about his recent marital acquisition Sherri Dupree. Repeat this ad infinitum and you have yourself a record that suits the lifestyle change for Bemis, but not quite who he is as a musician. Though, credit where credit is due, he is still able to turn a phrase and craft a decently catchy tune when he desires. 'I Never Knew You Were So Lonely' is both a satisfyingly gritty opening track and a decent tune to hum along to with its catchy ups and downs. That along with the few tracks that follow are perfect examples of Bemis doing what he does best, but he never quite capitalizes on that ability throughout the remainder of the record. Instead he restricts himself to sappy poetry and forgettable acoustic riffs to accentuate his gradual decrease of quality since late 2009.

Somewhere between the release of Say Anything's self-titled record in autumn 2009, and the winter of 2010, Bemis decided to ditch the irony and self-deprecation for a more straight-shot approach to both musicianship and lyricism, which is glaringly obvious from track one. He exists best when he's booming along with abstract synth patterns and atypical pop-punk rhythms, and not so much when he's alone with an acoustic guitar and a trigger-finger on the reverb. For fans of Bemis' early works on Baseball, you may find a track or two to enjoy on Max Bemis and the Painful Splits 2, but for fans of his later work with Say Anything, you will find yourself sorely disappointed.



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user ratings (9)
Chart.
3.1
good
other reviews of this album
crandynewman (3.5)
Max Bemis and the Painful Splits deliver a great 2nd album with one big flaw......


Comments:Add a Comment 
Slum
April 18th 2011



2579 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

haven't cranked out a review for a while, so here's this. enjoy.

Xenophanes
Emeritus
April 18th 2011



10584 Comments


good review

incredible dig

this probably sucks

Digging: United Nations - The Next Four Years

Slum
April 18th 2011



2579 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

sup xeno. Thanks dude, it does indeed

Xenophanes
Emeritus
April 18th 2011



10584 Comments


is it at least better than the first?

Slum
April 18th 2011



2579 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Umm, they both have their moments but they're pretty equal in mediocrity after the first few tracks

Knott-
Emeritus
April 18th 2011



10194 Comments


I was always under the impression that Max Bemis was the epicenter of everything that made Say Anything so fantastic.

doesn't he play every instrument on the studio recordings lol

Xenophanes
Emeritus
April 18th 2011



10584 Comments


I'll take your advice and steer clear then lol

FromDaHood
Contributing Reviewer
April 18th 2011



9033 Comments


About time this got reviewed. Needed to know if it was a waste before downloading

Slum
April 18th 2011



2579 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

"doesn't he play every instrument on the studio recordings lol"

He did for IARB but everything else was a full band thing if I'm not mistaken

FromDaHood
Contributing Reviewer
April 18th 2011



9033 Comments


Coby Linder played the drums for IARB, Bemis just did guitar, keyboards and bass

crazyblinddude
April 18th 2011



3389 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

It's a shame this wasn't any better than his last. Oh well. I kinda figured it wouldn't be up to par
with anything SA. I'll have to give it a spin first though.

Winsomniac
April 18th 2011



7954 Comments


Max Bemis. Owner of a slightly phallic last name.

Slum
April 18th 2011



2579 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

He actually mentions that on the album

Knott-
Emeritus
April 18th 2011



10194 Comments


cool. in other news i really like this record

Slum
April 18th 2011



2579 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

it seriously bores me to death, i'd be interested to read a review on it from you, though

Winsomniac
April 18th 2011



7954 Comments


So rate it so I can choose whether or not to disagree with your rating.

iFghtffyrdmns
April 19th 2011



7047 Comments


great review Slum... sounds to me like something worth avoiding.


cvlts
April 19th 2011



8954 Comments


Nice work, Nevin.

Haven't heard this but seeing as how Bemis' work in Two Tongues was atrocious I'll stay away.

Slum
April 19th 2011



2579 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Thanks dudes, greatly appreciated

Crymsonblaze
April 19th 2011



7479 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Like the first Painful Splits, the first song is by far the best. I liked this one better than the first one, but it's definitely not up to par with SA. It's not bad for some just home demo kind of thing though.



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