Review Summary: Start believing in pop music again.
As far as pop music in recent years has gone, I have found very few artists that I am able to listen to without cringing. Topping my list is Cee Lo Green, Sara Bareilles, and as of recent, Marianas Trench. When a friend of mine told me to check out Marianas Trench, she described them to me as the new Fall Out Boy. Like most of us, I had not been interested in Fall Out Boy since the seventh grade. Needless to say, I was not expecting much. Upon my first listen, I found a record layered with grooving electronic beats, catchy hooks, and sticky sweet vocals. Although obeying every cliché of pop, I had found something real in Ever After. I had found a record that made me believe that there is still hope for pop music.
After six minute and twenty-five second opener Ever After came to a close, it was easy to tell that there was something different about Marianas Trench from a typical pop-rock act. Seldom had I heard a six and a half minute pop song that could grasp me for its entirety. However, Ever After did a damn good job with incredible melodies and constant groove and mood switches. With the title track being slower in tempo, the rest of the album picked up quickly with the incredibly catchy Haven’t Had Enough. Like most on the album, the chorus is infectious and will have you singing it for days, no matter whom you are. This pop train keeps rolling in similar fashion for the next three tracks until it reaches Porcelain. This track is slow, delicate, and beautiful, and does an excellent job of giving the album some texture. The best track on Ever After, Fallout, is a powerful song about losing the person you love to someone else. It proves that Marianas Trench can take a pop cliché and mold it into something truly moving and meaningful. Possibly the best facet of the band is the lead vocalist and songwriter, Josh Ramsay. His voice is smooth and sweet and he was clearly influenced by some of the greats, delivering a performance reminiscent of Michael Jackson on Stutter. The album closes in a similar fashion to which it opened with No Place Like Home. Being even longer than Ever After, at nearly eight minutes long, this track still commands attention just as much as the rest of the album did.
Although it may be one of the (if not the most) consistent pop records ever produced, Ever After is not without its flaws. Toy
Soldiers is by no means a failure of a song; it simply fails to intrigue the listener as effectively as the other tracks did. The beat feels simple and repetitive leaving the song feeling bland and uninspired. So Soon, a piano ballad, is the slowest song on Ever After. After the upbeat track, B Teams, it feels as if So Soon is tedious and drags on for its five-minute length.
One does not come across a band like Marianas Trench very often. The ability to craft gripping and emotional pop songs is scarce in today’s mainstream music industry. But this band has done it perfectly. Ever After is an incredibly consistent effort with every song able to be a single. As I stated before, I’m not usually the biggest fan of pop music, but this record is simply unforgettable. Marianas Trench have provided the pop industry with its new model for perfection with Ever After and are sure to receive proper recognition for it. No matter what music you listen to, be sure to give Ever After a listen. No matter who you are, there is something to take away from it for everyone.