Most helpful positive review
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Absolutely amazing! One of the top ten albums of the 21st century
on March 27, 2012
I've been around the scene (punk and hardcore and everything in between) since 1989, and I probably own about 2000 records/cds. Every year (nowadays) I'm lucky if I come across more than a small handful of bands that make me feel as connected to, and as excited about, the music as I was 'back in the day'. About three years ago I came across the Menzingers - a band that fit that 'small handful' accolade...and then some. This album is, in a very good way, a bit more controlled than previous albums (notably the recording quality and the two singers' maturity with their voice capabilities; really good harmony does take a good amount of talent, especially if it's to convey a modicum of soulfulness that's too often lacking in anthemic tunes). Part of me misses the more raw style of aggression of, say, the song 'Sunday Morning', but another part of me would give $100 just to hear that song re-recorded and put on this album.
In short, this is sincerely one of the best albums I've picked up in the last decade. 'The Obituaries', 'Gates', and 'Ava House' may very well be the best three back-to-back-to-back songs that I've heard on an album since I don't even know when. If I had to be a critical jerk, then I'd say that the lyrics, though rich and polished for a band that's still in their 20s, could cling a bit less to the 'spoiled livers and smokes' motif, but I suppose it's fitting if one is, indeed, enamored upon drinking too much and smoking sticks of tobacco. This is the one area where I'm on the outside looking in, but to each their own.
Anyway, do yourself a favor and pick up this album. The band deserves your support, and if you're worthy then you deserve this music.
And if you're the band and you're reading this, then, to quote the Descendents, "thank you for playing the way you play."