Motion City Soundtrack - Even If It Kills Me

When they first started unleashing their bubbly brand of colourful pop punk and mild rock that builds around the demonstrative and clearly lofted vocals of the quirky character, Justin Pierre many thought that whilst they were fresh, spirited and uplifting they had a slight throway nature and their chances of consistency were slim-to-none. A few years ago, through ‘Commit This To Memory’ the seeds were planted a for more serious and brooding direction, but it still possessed enough of their quaintness and guitar driven alternative nudge that was prevalent enough to appease their grassroots crew. Now, third album territory brings about the full transition to serious, searching mid-tempo rock and tactically placed mournful and streaming piano touches. It clearly shows that Motion City Soundtrack now want to be taken seriously. Although, ‘Fell In Love’ eases people into their new way with tenderised subject matter. Moog, guitar and percussion bolstering represents traces of the pace switching indie punk that has littered their previous two albums.  The chorus bursting base is still very much prevalent, ‘This Is For Real’ and Joshua Cain continues to boost his reputation, as a roving guitar craftsman to match almost any contemporary.

This coming of age full length, draws together the vocal power and instrumental range, thrust and tempo switches to  decorate the presence of a deeper and mature lyrical searching. A streaming piano trickle that leads into ‘Broken Heart’, provides the subtle cushion for Pierre to eloquently convey their proud lyrical advances with an autobiographical kick;

“I’ll devise the best disguise. A brand new look & take them by surprise.

  They’ll never guess what’s inside.”

‘Hello Helicopter’ uses the swooning and intimate impact that an acapella approach affords to lead upp to the catchy and simple chorus that M C S have been famed for and have built the lion-share fan-base upon. A trio of expressive guest vocalists inclusive of the calming femme stroke of Rachel Minton, gives even more impact to this important aspect of their song-structure. ‘Even If It Kills Me’, uses Saves The Day impact and potency to complete thirteen tracks of variety and heart, in a punchy fashion. Should this Minnesota based quintet continue to grow in broadness and impact then the future will no longer freak them out. They will look forward to it as they reach a wider audience in both age-range and background.

David Adair

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