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 » Full Dark, No Stars - Stephen King's new novella questions mankind's ability to trust others.
[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]

MUSIC

 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
[12.24.2010 by The LAS Staff]

MUSIC

 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
[11.04.2010 by Cory Tendering]

Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
»Deerhunter
Halcyon Digest
4AD
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
»Robyn
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Konichiwa
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Lisbon
Fat Possum
Mae
The Everglow
Tooth & Nail Records

Rating: 5.5/10 ?


August 5, 2005
Where do we draw the line? How much more can we take? When will it stop? When will it end?

The members of Mae are good musicians. They craft some pretty melodies, some nice twinkling keyboards, and accent their work with some syrupy vocals. But besides having a shot at redemption with a song like "Suspension," this has to be some of the wussiest music put down on record in at least the past year.

Listening to The Everglow you get the feeling that even the most feeble person, after a couple weeks in the weight room, could kick any member of Mae's ass - not that that has anything to do with the music, but there comes a point when musicians must be accountable for overly pandering to the emotionally fragile, the adolescent disenfranchised and the teenage girl population.

The Everglow sounds like an overly emotional love letter to each of those demographics. This record is a concept album of sorts; the music and booklet recall a children's story book. This marriage of sight and sound creates a multi-sensory experience: it's fitting that this concept album is related to childhood, because the group (or at least the lyricist) can't seem to escape the emotions of childhood. The songs are constantly bound by the frustration and emotional vulnerability most commonly associated with adolescence. These are mawkish odes to childhood - songs about love and uncertainty delivered with so much melodrama they make Coldplay appear lyrically and musically profound. See the sample lyric, "I need you tonight like the ocean needs the waves," for more details.

These guys might succeed at making the Juliana Theory appear kick-ass; this is weaker than Jimmy Eat world at their worst. Indeed, much like Jimmy Eat World, Mae approaches their record from a meticulous standpoint, layering all their songs with enough atmospherics, multiple guitar lines and other indescribably lush sounds to form a cacophony that simply tingles with melodrama. There's so much of it you'll swear you can sense the tears oozing out the speakers.

In attempting to add so much emotional weight to their music, the band comes across as insincere chasers of the trend of emotionally vulnerable pop music. While I'm more than willing to give them credit as good musicians - technically skilled and able to meet their goals - there comes a point when getting by and sticking to a formula isn't good enough. They should take what skill they have and create something sincere, honest and unique; as it stands right now, you can probably catch Mae playing the rock club stages, but this type of music is better suited for rocking youth group socials and sweet sixteen parties.

Reviewed by Dan Williams
A staff writer based in Brooklyn, New York, Dan Williams is a frequent contributor to LAS magazine. He once lived in Köln, Germany for a semester, is currently persuing his MBA in New York, and recently switched sides and began working as a publicist for Special Ops Media in New York.

See other reviews by Dan Williams

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