Okay, between a nasty bought of writer's block, focusing on school, and then a trip to the nation's capital I've seriously neglected this blog. It's well past time for some new content and I'm gonna offer some up whether I've got a story ready or not.
I'm a bit of a metalhead and I've loved both of Miss May I's previous albums so of course I'm listening to the two singles they released early over and over and over to get pumped for their next album. And since what is a blog if not an ego-trip in which the writer pukes his/her thoughts and feelings all over the internet (whether or not anyone cares) I'm going to indulge in the time-honored tradition of sharing. Without further ado, my thoughts:
Hey Mister is the album's first single and comes with an interesting music video that doesn't quite live up to the twisted Relentless Chaos video, the raw Forgive and Forget, or the surprisingly touching Masses of a Dying Breed but hey, that's a lot to live up to. Fortunately the music itself is plenty good. The production is still crisp but unobtrusive (something plenty of other bands can't quite nail down), Levi's screams are monstrous, both guitarists tear through the song constantly in danger of setting their guitars on fire, and Boyd's work on the drums is just destructive. Neff's clean vocals aren't used as heavily as they might've been, as if Levi's anger is just too overwhelming for anything civil to push through. This could just be me but I definitely didn't dig the lyrics as much as I did for most of their previous songs. It's not that they're not good, I just can't relate to the focal point of his anger.
The first time I listened to Day by Day it gave me goosebumps just thinking of the kind of moshpits that it would orchestrate. I want in on this shit. Now. Levi's screams aren't as full-throated throughout the song as usual, he sounds a bit more strung-out and ragged during the verses. It's an interesting change of pace from to his normal screaming. Ryan Neff's clean vocals are much more heavily represented in this song than in Hey Mister and they soar as high as anyone could want. Compelling vocals as always. As much as I love the thought of moshing to this song, close analysis does show little in the way of originality musically. None of the instruments are played badly (if they were this song wouldn't have the momentum that makes it such a perfect live anthem), but they don't break any new ground. Monument was a great album, but it's riffs didn't match up to those on Apologies Are for the Weak and it looks like At Heart won't be as consistently riff-tastic either. That said, I still wanna rock someone while this song plays.
Miss May I were never a band that tried to reinvent the wheel, but they always pumped out Metalcore that any fan of the genre could thrash to. If these two singles are any indication then fans are going to be handed another solid slab of pure metal. Here's hoping they can match the more engaging riffs of Apologies Are for the Weak with the greatly improved vocal quality on Monument to form some sort of super album here.
Hopefully the three people who occasionally humor me by reading this blog won't mind this foray into less writing-oriented content. If they do, they can bring it up with the complaints department.
Day by Day