Mayday Parade
Black Lines


3.5
great

Review

by bagof4grapes USER (2 Reviews)
October 9th, 2015 | 18 replies


Release Date: 10/09/2015 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Mayday Parade tries to make a Brand New album, and it kinda worked.

A note: since this album has only been out for a couple of hours (or at least I've only known of it's release for a couple of hours), so this is based on a first listen. The rating and individual perspectives on songs may change overtime.

Mayday Parade has always been a strange case for me. They were a highly acclaimed pop punk band (which is a genre I listen to too much) with their first album "A Lesson In Romantics". From what I've heard about them, every other album from them is apparently not great, because a key member on their debut left after it's release. The reason they were a strange case for me is because I can't even get into "A Lesson in Romantics". I can listen to and appreciate it, but as a whole, I've never been able to make it through a full album of theirs. Until now.

When I saw that they had a new single, I was somewhat interested. When I heard the producer was that of Taking Back Sunday and Brand New, I became curious about what kind of sound they would produce. Lead single "Keep In Mind, Transmogrification is a New Technology" met the expectations I had set. The song did have a Brand New vibe to it, and while the beginning got relatively repetitive quickly, the second half of the song provided differently. The bridge was very explosive and eventually as the song closed out, they incorporated tape loops and a slow pitch bend that sounds relatively like the ending of Weezer's "Undone - the Sweater Song". Listening to that single alone made me determine that I had to listen to this album. I had expected an album that although had catchy hooks and vocals, also had signs of evolution and maturity. In some ways, I sort of expected them to release an album such as "The Devil and God Are Raged Inside Me". Is that what this album was"

Not really. The album, although showcased the band's evolution, was relatively similar to a lot of other music they've made, just musically superior. That's one thing this album definitely is. The bass lines are not only more present on this album, but they're also stronger. Specifically on tracks such as "Let's Be Honest". The guitar work is also a lot better, specifically referring to the wah solo on "One of Them Will Destroy the Other". Derek seems to be taking up a Jesse Lacey influence with his lyrics, because on tracks (again) like "One of Them Will Destroy the Other", Derek is just screaming his lungs apart, belting out the lyrics with a sense of passion. Even though he's just not there lyrically, his vocal performance on this album is spectacular, and not something I'd expect from him.

However, the album does have a major flaw: consistency. On this album, you get a lot of different vibes from a lot of different songs, and these vibes don't really work together. On the album, you can hear songs with a grungy overtone to it (Hollow), yet on other tracks you can hear an influence from the quieter Jimmy Eat World songs (Letting Go). These tracks would sound great surrounded by the kind of music that they belong with, but in this mix of different vibes, the album can lose listeners relatively quickly. However, that really only represents a good portion of the first half. Tracks like "Narrow" and "Keep In Mind, Transmogrification is a New Technology" give a feel that's very similar to what Brand New might make. Other tracks, such as "Underneath the Tide" and "All on Me" are very strong hard rock tracks. "All on Me" specifically has a catchy riff and a generally awesome sound to it, being one of the album's later highlights.

Like all great albums, the closer plays a key part on whether the album was a pleasant listen (unless the album is the Fragile). "One of Us" starts off shakily, but the song eventually develops into one of the best songs on the album. The track builds up a lot and develops into a track that sums up the album well. It kinda sounds like a collection of everything the listener just heard.

I feel like the first half of this album was very similar to Minutes to Midnight by Linkin Park. A couple of great standout tracks but the rest of the album feels really awkward and shaky. However, they picked themselves back up and finished the album leaving listeners feeling completed. While I don't think this is the best Mayday Parade could've done with this, they definitely showed a lot of potential, and they seem to be taking a step in the right direction. I really enjoyed this album and I think if they keep this up, they will develop into an incredible band.

Download:
One of Them Will Destroy the Other
Keep In Mind, Transmogrification is a New Technology
Narrow
All on Me
One of Us

Or just listen to the full album on whatever streaming service you use to determine which tracks you like.


user ratings (161)
Chart.
3.5
great
other reviews of this album
beachdude (4.5)
A genuinely surprising exercise in experimentation and nuance....

ASnideReturns (2)
Bring me her heart, and leave the rest for dead......



Comments:Add a Comment 
leviegalapon
October 9th 2015


78 Comments


pretty good review, I feel like I know how the album is without listening to it. pos'd

beachdude
October 9th 2015


846 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Good review man. The one thing I would suggest is trying to go for a slightly more formal tone, such as avoiding things like "kinda" and "I feel like"... you don't have to write in the first person since a review is obviously your own opinion. Other than that, I think you described the album well.

bagof4grapes
October 9th 2015


309 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

@beachdude Thanks! Your review for this album was really great. Yeah I don't have really any experience so thanks for the feedback. I'll write more formally next time.

BrushedRed
October 9th 2015


3083 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

This is really good. After hearing their first single, I expected it all to be heavier but there really is a little bit of everything here. I really like this album.

Digging: Big Thief - U.F.O.F.

ProjectFreak
October 9th 2015


3615 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Two songs in and it's already miles ahead of the last one

almosttolerable
October 9th 2015


126 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Good review. This is probably one of my favorite albums this year.

BrushedRed
October 10th 2015


3083 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

"Narrow" is one amazing song

Danred97
October 10th 2015


2215 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I loved Lesson In Romantics, but I never got around to listening to anything else by these guys. That said, this album is really good. If I had one complaint, it's that this album is a bit inconsistent. This won't be topping my AOTY list, but it was an enjoyable listen.

Ebola
October 11th 2015


3576 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

The verb agreement in your summary is off. It should be either "tried" and "worked" or "try" and "works."

LotusFlower
October 11th 2015


12001 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

never thought i'd see the day where I gave a Mayday album something higher than a 2

ProjectFreak
October 13th 2015


3615 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Mayday Parade is usually pretty inconsistent, but I'm still pleasantly surprised by this. The fact that they could pull off any kind of stylistic shift and not fall on their faces implies that they have gas in the tank still.

dmp3131
October 15th 2015


1338 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Album is slowly growing on me.



Hollow sounds like a TDAG b-side.

BrushedRed
October 22nd 2015


3083 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Hollow is great and does have a TDAG flair. This album is awesome!

DaveyBoy
Emeritus
November 19th 2015


22486 Comments

Album Rating: 3.8

Eschewing comfort & familiarity, Floridian quintet Mayday Parade look to branch out on their 5th LP 'Black Lines'. Produced by Mike Sapone, this is a surprising evolution that unapologetically leans more to raw & intense emo, than slick & catchy pop-punk. Recalling the likes of Brand New & Taking Back Sunday, this is a gritty, emotional & aggressive record, with front-man Derek Sanders sounding as if he stepped right out of the 90s. It's uneven (the slower songs need work) & it could alienate loyal fans, but this brave LP includes some genuinely dynamic song-writing that is too good to ignore. Recommended Tracks: One of Us, All on Me, One of Them... & Keep in Mind....

LoLifant
January 13th 2016


1530 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

nice

Volbeat18
March 20th 2018


84 Comments


Their best album.

ProjectFreak
March 20th 2018


3615 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

not even close

Torment111
June 27th 2018


36 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

FLOAT IN ECSTASY WITH YOU NEXT TO ME



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