Masked Intruder’s sophomore full-length M.I. isn’t just as good as their stellar self-titled debut—it’s better. M.I. is 13 songs of pop punk perfection with unforgettable hooks, beautifully crafted melodies, and lyrics that are so earnest that they make you forget that this band’s thing is a gimmick. It’s actually that final point that makes the gimmick work. The band is supposedly a group of ex-cons that have been known for breaking into girls’ houses (among other things) and wear colored ski masks to protect their identities (like a burglar). They play the gimmick so straight that it works perfectly and makes for some of the most fun and entertaining music out there today.
Masked Intruder’s music isn’t anything breathtakingly new or innovative but their spin on the sub-genre certainly is. Mixing healthy doses of traditional pop punk (i.e. Ramones meets ALL) with elements of doo wop, results in a sound that is infectious and fresh. Those doo wop moments are what help this record really shine (see the brilliant “Almost Like We’re Already In Love”) because they highlight this bands excellent vocals. That’s all not to say that the more standard pop punk songs aren’t also fantastic, because they are. The simple fact is, this band has yet to release a bad song. I’d even go so far as to say that Masked Intruder is the best pop punk going today, if not one of the best of all-time. M.I. is a must for fans of the genre and easily one of the best records of 2014.