The Maine

Black & White

Written by: PP on 27/08/2010 16:16:52

From the poppiest corner of the pop punk realm, I bring you The Maine, who recently hit a big break and were picked up by Warner Bros for their sophomore full length. As a result, if you are at all familiar with the band's debut album "Can't Stop Won't Stop", you might as well throw away most of your preconceptions of how you think "Black & White" will sound, because Warner has seemingly done a complete revamp of their sound with the help of some dedicated hit writers. Instead of sounding naive and youthful, or like a second rate Fall Out Boy clone, Warner's major label production budget has ensured a big sound, big riffs, big everything, as you might expect with Howard Benson behind the knobs.

As a result, The Maine now sound unmistakably like Hit The Lights in The Summer Set at the All Time Low versus Poet and The Kings, bla bla bla. They're not at all original on this one, they merely rely on pop choruses catchy like the plague and simplistic instrumentation that's not going to win them any talent awards. But as much as I want to hate such a bubblegum-pop/power pop sound, The Maine actually do a rather good job at writing memorable melodies that don't sound as shallow as they really should do. Some songs have a decent tempo that should justify the Hit The Lights reference, and elsewhere songs like "Growing Up" go so far into pop realm that we're knocking on the door of Goo Goo Dolls and the likes. But where The Maine really hits a home run is on tracks like "Fuel To The Fire" and "Give It To Me", both of which are so irresistible that even a two year old will be singing along after the first chorus. Sure, they are beyond predictable and strictly follow a standard pop song formula, but it's not always wrong to enjoy such a song, as long as it sticks to mind, right?

In the end, "The Black & White" will never be an album topping the end of year charts. But it's likely to be one of those guilty pleasure records you'll stick on when you are in dire need of ultra poppy pop punk that restores a summery feeling on the sunset strip to your mind. It's no different from its successful peers, but that isn't a problem in my eyes.


Download: Fuel To The Fire, Growing Up, Give It To Me
For the fans of: Hit The Lights, newer Fall Out Boy, Goo Goo Dolls, Artist Vs Poet
Listen: Myspace

Release date 13.07.2010
Warner Bros

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