New Release Reviews: Mayday Parade And State Champs

Mayday Parade and State Champs both released new albums today and, frankly, I’m a little overwhelmed because they’re both fantastic.

Mayday’s sixth release, Sunnyland, is their first with Rise Records. This album is exactly what I was hoping for. After taking a departure from their signature sound with Black Lines in 2015, the band saw massive successes with their Tales Told by Dead Friends and A Lesson in Romantics 10-year anniversary tours in 2016 and 2017. This time around, the band definitely tapped into their fans’ desire for some classic, emotional, dramatic Mayday magic. Singer Derek Sanders confirmed this sentiment in an interview with Rock Sound:

“There’s a little bit of everything we have done over the last 12 years. We have really tried to nail those things that people have connected to and what we are good at.”

Ahead of the album, fans got a taste of the nostalgia with singles “Piece of Your Heart”, “Never Sure”, and “It’s Hard To Be Religious When Certain People Are Never Incinerated By Bolts Of Lightning”.

The smart ordering of tracks keeps listeners on their toes by weaving in and out of soft, acoustic songs and upbeat, high-energy tunes. Mayday Parade is officially back and ready to tug on our heartstrings the way only they can.

Favorite lyric: I won’t lie / I only love you for the heartbreak (“Never Sure”)

Seeing as Mayday Parade has been my favorite band for over a decade, State Champs had some pretty stiff competition today. And yet they delivered. The band’s third full-length, Living Proof, is nothing short of pop-punk glory. It borders on straight up pop if only because the tracks are so incredibly catchy, but it’s hard-hitting and emotional enough that it still fits their brand. The first track, “Criminal”, packs a punch from the opening lines:

 So what’s it mean when every dream I have’s about you now? / I can’t believe you get to me the way you do somehow / It’s criminal

 On “Time Machine”, I was pleasantly surprised to hear Mark Hoppus’ voice featured. For me, though, the best song on this album by far is “The Fix Up.” I have listened to that song at least 10 times today.

Overall, this release has cemented State Champs’ rightfully earned place in the scene.

Favorite lyric: I thought the worst was you giving up / but now we’re chasing feelings just to be okay (“The Fix Up”)

Do your weekend a favor and blast both of these albums ASAP.

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