Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Album Review: ‘Rented World’ by The Menzingers

Philadelphia, PA’s The Menzingers’ fourth full-length record Rented World is the sound of a band dealing with maturity.  If the band’s previous album, 2012’s On the Impossible Past was the sound of a band growing up, then Rented World is the realization of what it means to be an adult.  Sonically this record is the culmination of all that came before it, mixing elements of pop punk, emo, indie rock, post hardcore, and classic rock resulting in an album that sways from driving anthems (see the amazing album opener, and possibly best song of the year, “I Don’t Wanna Be An Asshole Anymore”) to delicate ballads (the closing “When You Died”) to mid-tempo rockers (“When Your Heartache Exists”) and a seemingly Rilo Kiley inspired ditty (“Rodent”).  The Menzingers find themselves living in that newly ambiguous area of punk where bands like Luther, Restorations (both also from Philadelphia), The Radio Reds, and The Gaslight Anthem reside.  This style seems to be born of bands that grew up on the punk and underground rock of the ‘80s and ‘90s, taking all of those various genres and sub-genres and throwing them into a pot to boil and stew.  Of these bands The Menzingers are one of the finest with Rented World being a stellar output, one of 2014’s best.  

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