There's just something about Canada and pop-punk bands. Some of the most successful, teen-friendly groups to come out of our neighbor to the north embrace that sorta whiny, super-catchy sound, from Avril Lavigne and Sum 41 to Simple Plan and Hedley. Here's hoping Marianas Trench is the next group to gain some recognition here in the States, since their new sophomore album, Masterpiece Theatre, has a little something for everyone and makes them stand out from the pack for their evolving maturity.
The Vancouver, British Columbia-based foursome first released Masterpiece Theatre a year-and-a-half ago in their home country, and it is their first album since 2006. Since their debut, Fix Me, the band was featured on the soundtrack to television show Kyle XY (which was released in America), and they released the ultra-hilarious (if slightly offensive) video "Shake Tramp".
Like Fix Me, Masterpiece Theatre is full of sing-along songs and fun hooks. Lead singer Josh Ramsay sounds as emotional as ever, belting tunes about crushes, fame and childhood memories.
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What stands out, though, is how heavy the band's Queen influence comes through on the album. From the epic opener "Masterpiece Theatre I," to the violin-heavy, 6 1/2-minute "Masterpiece Theatre III," the band's harmonies are in full force, with all four members singing. The songs go beyond the typical three-chord progression found in so many other tracks of their peer artists, and the result is beautiful with a heavy focus on the vocals. And while the upbeat songs are as fun as ever, ballads such as "Good to You" and "Beside You" are strikingly powerful.
The band hopes to make it to the U.S. for a tour, and if listening to the very pretty album isn't enough to make you want to support it, watch this video and just imagine what awesomeness could ensue on-stage.