Living in a day and age where all music is literally a click away for any listener, loyalty to the genre has diminished and people are listening to everything and everyone. It’s hard to think that any band could stay fresh and relevant knowledge that fans could be listening to Marilyn Manson in the morning and Drake by dinner. Mayday Parade has accomplished this with their latest album Sunnyland, a heartfelt, artistic collaboration, with a nice mix of punk rock, rock and acoustic. It’s filled with hope for future happiness while still holding on to everything that makes Mayday Parade them.
The album begins with a classic punk rock anthem, “Never Sure”, singing of heartbreak. Surprisingly upbeat, it’s a song you can easily sing along to. Derek Sanders sings of having his love rip his heart out and keeping it in a mason jar. It’s a gruesome image sung beautifully, giving us all a look into hipster culture and their undying love affair for mason jars. Continuing on, “It_s hard to be Religious” stays in the vein of punk rock. Albeit a slower pace than the previous song, the drums on the track really shining through. “Piece of Your Heart”, a beautiful ballad about love. Beginning with electric guitar, it changes into a mix of acoustic guitar and Sander’s voice, with perfectly harmonized back vocals. Picking the pace back up again, they hit us with “Is Nowhere”. It’s heavier drums, electric guitar, and Sander’s more screaming like voice, make you want to move and mosh around. Crowds will like this one as Mayday Parade heads out on tour this summer, headlining Vans Warp Tour final run.
“Take My Breath Away” is a fully acoustic song. Allowing Sanders vocals to shine, the band allows everything else to be stripped away. It’s vulnerable and raw. “Stay the Same” brings us back to their rock roots, opening with electric guitar and drums. He sings of wishing things would stay the same, which is something everyone has wished, knowing change is inevitable. Time will always move forward. Hiking the intensity up, we return to more punk vibes with “How do you Like Me Now”. With its fast pace and feelings of not wanting to die alone, it speaks to the insecurities everyone has when facing someone they love, not knowing how the other person feels. “Where Are You” brings us back to another acoustic-only song, giving the listener a moment to take in the lyrics and excellent vocal composition. We don’t get too much of a rest though as we return to the ever-present punk rock anthems, like “If I Were You”.
“Satellite” takes a more commercial approach in its setup, starting with calm and consistent electric guitar and light drums, building to the chorus where the song bursts into the atmosphere, as Sander sings they “could fly away.” Returning to classic rock, “Looks Red, Tastes Blue” is a genuine song about strong emotions of love and loss. “Always Leaving” is a folksy acoustic ballad. It’s calm and a wonderful story of always being on the road. Our journey comes to end with the final and title song “Sunnyland”, an acoustic song recalling childhood memories, wanting to return to childlike innocence only to realize that time has changed you into a more cynical being.
Mayday Parade has created a balanced mix of punk rock, rock and acoustic songs that delve into the themes of happiness, loss, love, and life. Although sometimes dark, there is a lot of hope in the words they sing and melodies they have composed.
Take a listen. Maybe it will transport you to your childhood and more innocent days.
Mayday Parade will next play at the Moroccan in Los Angeles on June 18th. For more information, click here!
To purchase ‘Sunnyland’, click here!