In the midst of starting on tour on AP Magazine’s Fall Ball along with acts such as The Academy Is… and Set Your Goals, Mayday Parade released their third, much anticipated, studio album. Compared to their previous albums Tales Told By Dead Friends and A Lesson In Romantics it is obvious that the band took a new approach to making music in Anywhere But Here. Members Derek Sanders, Jeremy Lenzo, Alex Garcia, Brooke Betts, and Jake Bundrick steered clear of the style they used in making A Lesson In Romantics. This style involves deeper guitar riffs, spotlights that focused on Sanders’ voice and lyrics that had a sinister edge (such as ‘Black Cat” and “When I Get Home You Are So Dead”). In Anywhere But Here, Sanders’ vocals seem to have less of a sharp edge and more of a softened ambience (In songs such as “I Swear This Time I Mean It” and the title track “Anywhere But Here”). The vocals also tended to succumb into the powerful instrumentals. The transition from true alternative music to a pop-punk sound has taken place. I believe that they used creative licenses and experimented with different styles that they could use in production because not all songs on the Anywhere But Here sound compeletly new. Songs like “The End” and “Get Up” reflect a lot of Mayday Parade’s older work and are less revamped to fit the new approach.
Despite their slight change in sound, the album is still true to Mayday Parade. The music can be exciting and soothing all at the same time, providing a nice medium between the to extremes. I love to listen to the record while getting ready to go out and also when I am trying to lull myself into a deep sleep. the album’s content opens itself to extraordinary adaptability in all the different scenarios that it could be listened too.
Another aspect of the record that I am happy was not lost in the long wait between releases was Sanders’ ability to write completely heartfelt and poetic lyrics. Something I really enjoy about the lyrics is that I can listen to them at any given time and I actually find myself able to relate to them, no matter what the situation is. They also don’t always follow the cliche theme of a broken hearted boy pining over his lost love. A segment from “Still Breathing” Shows the versatility of Sanders’, showing that he has the ability to make a phenomenal song without using worn out ideas. “Its hard to be a man/But I’m doing all I can/I’m ready to give this all I have/I’m ready to be amazed.”
Overall, I love Mayday Parade’s new album even though I do admit that I would have liked to hear more of the edginess that I was expecting. I also would have loved it if Sanders’ voice was spotlighted more rather than continually backed by a powerful musical backdrop. Mayday Parade has not disappointed with their present release and will not be going under the radar anytime soon.