Manic Drive
Blue


1.5
very poor

Review

by metalheadrunner USER (53 Reviews)
January 11th, 2015 | 8 replies


Release Date: 2009 | Tracklist

Review Summary: You’ll throw up.

Manic Drive started off as a strong heavy rock band with alt-metal, pop-punk, and alt. rock leanings with their first release in 2005, a superb album entitled Reason for Motion. In 2007, they released a further melodic, alt-rock styled album called Reset and Rewind. It included poppier elements than previously, and moderately rid itself of the greater part of Manic’s sonic edge. While it wasn’t god-awful, it wasn’t near as promising as Reason, and you could predict the eventual downfall of Manic. Reset started the downfall, but third release Blue confirmed it. A remix album of sorts, it featured eight tracks from the sophomore outing, and four new tracks. How does this release stack up?

Let me be clear: any hope for Manic is abdicated with this album. While Reset offered a little hope of gaining back a rockier edge, with tracks like Addiction and Obvious, Blue buries this miniscule gem of hope into the ground. Proof can be found in opener Music. While previous openers where album highlights and full of strong energy, Music abandons that with typical violins and synth. Furthermore, the album isn’t quite a remix album, that’s just a fitting title. Rather, they made microscopic changes to songs from Reset, and made four new songs signaling their new direction. What’s the new direction? Shawn has totally thrown away his screaming and gruff vocals, talented guitarist Mike’s enjoyable riffs have taken a back seat to programming elements, former bassist Phil has been dropped from the band, and talented drummer Johnny Dimarco was replaced by less-talented drummer Anthony Moreino. And this has all happened with terrible results.

Ordinarily, standout tracks would fit here. However, there honestly aren’t any. While Walls tries to retain a rock edge, what with its high energy feel and one guitar riff, the overusage of synthesizer and the generic lyrical content prevent that. Carry-over track Blue still sounds alright, but it's one of the only positives. The other item that could somewhat be considered satisfying is that, whoever did bass on this album, it’s partially further surfaced than it was on the previous two records. The redone earlier tracks don’t sound any better, or undoubtedly any different, and an EP would’ve been a better choice for this release, which was probably nothing more than a cash grab.

Speaking of cash grab, Manic Drive did succeed with that: they now have a legion of fans who hate the band’s roots and prefer their generic idiocy. Everything about Manic now screams cash grab: observe at the cover art of the album, listen to the new tracks, and read the lyrics. Speaking of lyrics, they’ve forgone the honest and blunt lyrics from Reason and the cleverly-written lyrics from the majority of Reset in favor of this: Christian contemporary fare, and party band fare. On Music, lyrics describe "bringing the stage to life" and the fact that "nobody takes the soul out of me." There's also the typical "turn the music higher" shoutout. The most embarassing thing, though, is the fact that Manic refers to this song as "rock n' roll." The intro to Walls is filled with "yeahs", while the chorus contains: "you can never stop it from coming, cause there's something going down, these walls are coming down" and there's a verse that goes "can we practice what we preach, and turn these fists into hands that preach." Yes, this has all been beaten over the head.

Here’s what Manic has managed to “accomplish” with this release: screw over all their loyal fans by releasing a commercial crap album that sounds manufactured by an autotuned robot whose powers was ruining considerable alt-rock/heavier rock bands. Manic Drive would barely be deserving of a second chance if they played their heavier songs live, but after suffering through a recorded live show, it seems they want to bury the enjoyable days of Manic. Whether you are a Manic Drive fan or not, don’t buy this. If you are a fan, it’ll just piss you off. If you aren’t a fan, and you want some music with substance, you’ll throw up.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
facetheslayer666
January 11th 2015


79 Comments


what IS alternative rock exactly?


Digging: The Fratellis - We Need Medicine

metalheadrunner
January 11th 2015


216 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Hey face, their style of alternative rock leaned a little more towards poppier rock, similar to newer Fall Out Boy, than classic alternative rock, like U2 or Coldplay.

skoopy48
January 11th 2015


1653 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

This band turned the worst agreed.

metalheadrunner
January 11th 2015


216 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Yeak skoopy, they suck now. It's sad though, they had some potential on both Reason for Motion and Reset and Rewind, those are some good albums

amanwithahammer
January 11th 2015


585 Comments


This review doesn't really describe the music very much or tell me why the album is bad other than "They're not as rock as they used to be! Too poppy yuck!" You did mention the lyrics of this album to be very much "Christian contemporary fare, and party band fare" - maybe expand on that a bit? Instead of just saying "listen to the new tracks, and read the lyrics", maybe explain what the music sounds like or even give some examples of lyrics? That's kind of what the review is for, letting us know what the album is like without us having to actually listen to it (especially since you recommend that we don't).

This review just comes off as kind of an anti-pop rant to me... I also feel like generalising "young girls" as not wanting substance in the music they listen to really damages reviewer credibility. That all being said, you're clearly good at writing, you just need to explain more why it's a poor album other than the fact that it's less heavy and more poppy, things that believe it or not don't = bad in themselves.

metalheadrunner
January 11th 2015


216 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Alright hammer, thank you for all the help, I'll try and edit it right now.

amanwithahammer
January 11th 2015


585 Comments


Good on you for really taking constructive criticism here, this review is definitely looking better than it did previously. Still feels like it has a bit of a 'rockist' attitude which is kind of a turn off for me personally, but based on your descriptions this definitely does sound genuinely bad; those lyrics really are pretty eh. Doesn't really sound like much of a passion project, huh? Keep reviewing man, I feel like you're quite young (apologies if you're not haha) but have a real knack for writing.

Also:

"Furthermore,the album"

Needs a space after the comma

"what with it's high energy feel"

its*

"prevent that.Carry-over track Blue"

Needs another space after the fullstop

I think I saw a couple other small things (maybe) but can't remember

metalheadrunner
January 12th 2015


216 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Nah hammer no need to apologize. I'm actually in my later teens. And thanks again for all the help, I made those edits. Also, I don't mind criticism, as long as it's not pointless ranting: you didn't do that, and for that thanks.



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