Monday, 20 May 2013

Review: MS MR, Secondhand Rapture

MS MR Secondhand Rapture anticipated release 2013 new album songs lyrics review

I was halfway through making a playlist for this summer when I remembered that MS MR’s debut album, Secondhand Rapture, had been released on the 14th.  I quickly found it on iTunes with the intention of listening to a few songs to get an idea of what they had done on their full album after their previous few EPs.  After sampling 3 songs I bought the album and have been listening non-stop all day. I certainly will not need my summer playlist – this album is all I see myself listening to for at least the next month!

When I was younger, I remember being elated when a new Avril Lavigne or Green Day album would be released.  I would convince my dad to drive straight to Best Buy the morning of the release and then he would have the pleasure of listening to that and only that for the next 6 months.  With the sheer amount of music that is so readily available now, I don’t get the feeling of being that excited over a band very often.  Yet, MS MR has given it to me once again, and I think they’re going to have the same effect on a lot of other people.

Recently, all of the new music I’ve heard has been one of two things: synthesizer-laden pop music where the listeners are provided the challenge of differentiating between songs or a guy essentially playing his ipod to a stadium full of people.  Yet, throughout Secondhand Rapture, each song does not blend monotonously into the next.  Each song is different, coherent and addicting!  With the similar name and male-female duo, the obviously instinct is to compare MS MR to She & Him.  Yet, about 30 seconds into the first song, their sound is so unique and strong that the resemblance is immediately forgotten.  Still, lead singer Lizzy Plapinger’s voice reminds me of Florence Welch of Florence + the Machine and MS MR do sound quite like a darker version of F+TM.  

While the dark lyrics and tones of each song are what initially draw you in, the unique addition of echoing and heavy drums makes it impossible not to listen to these songs over and over again.  I love the use of drums on “Salty Sweet” and the openness of the lyrics along with the vivid orchestra of “Hurricane”.  While “Bones” and “Hurricane” are the obvious singles off the album, “Fantasy”, “Ash Tree Lane” and “Head Is Not My Home” are also very strong.

With the option of buying only one or two songs, rather than an entire album (thanks to iTunes), bands have been under more and more pressure in the last 10 or so years.  This means that there is less leeway for filler songs.  Clearly, MS MR has not been fazed by the idea of using filler songs and I believe that Secondhand Rapture is the strongest debut album so far of 2013! 

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