The Menzingers - On The Impossible Past

Gone are the days that punk music was used solely for outcries of social discontent, rebellion and anarchy.

Gone are the days that punk music was used solely for outcries of social discontent, rebellion and anarchy. Like everything, punk has evolved. In this day, rather than reflecting on problems of a national scale, bands are now more willing to focus internally on the issues that they have to deal with themselves in their day to day lives. Issues that cause them personal suffering, real life affairs that an audience can relate to and acknowledge, making the listener feel closer to a band than ever before. This is exactly what The Menzingers manage to accomplish on their third album ‘On The Impossible Past’.

The Menzingers manage to pour open their hearts on this record, without sounding like a bunch of angsty teenagers trying to appeal to the emotions of the broken youth. The pace has been slowed compared to the bands previous efforts, and the noise has been lowered, resulting in the most mature album in their back catalogue. Instead of switching up the formula too much, The Menzingers stick to what they know best and emphasise them. Catchy hooks, clean melodies and a sensible attitude combine to create an easily accessible album that should thrust the band into the spotlight, and one that will be found on many ‘Best of’ lists at the end of 2012.

Very rarely does the album drop below the standards expected from a band so talented. Consistency is a staple of the record, with particular highlights in the form of opener ‘Good Things’, ‘The Obituaries’ and ‘Ava House’. Vocalists Greg Barnett and Tom May’s voices intertwine throughout tracks as the tone shifts with each song, highlighting the different perspectives and problems that an individual faces in everyday life. “Waiting patiently for a decent night’s sleep” cries Barnett on ‘Sun House’ - first world problems for a common man, a rock star suited for compassion.

Although the band have a self confessed tendency to fuck things up, one thing they can find solace in is the fact that they have managed to create an almost flawless punk album, and go at least 45 minutes without fucking up here. With the backing of the established label Epitaph, The Menzingers are tipped for a big year, and if they can continue making albums to the quality of ‘On The Impossible Past’, they will be a name that continues to circulate for years to come.

Tags: Reviews, Album Reviews

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