With current trends falling in and out of fashion every other day, its impact on society is that of an extremely short attention span and a deep seeded need for transcendent entertainment 24/7. But many trends of yesteryear yearn to escape this dreaded state of obscurity through attempting to raise their profile for a new age of fans to experience and mull over. One such cavalry attempting the feat of the re-insurgence of an early millennial favourite genre are the Floridian Alternative Pop Punk/Emo band Mayday Parade, with their anxiously awaited 6th studio album, Sunnyland.
The new record harkens back to the mainstream golden era of Pop Punk, which spanned nearly 15 years of teenage disillusionment taking the global centre stage of Pop Culture from the mid 90’s and beyond. With a running theme discussing the all too well versed murky perception of early adolescence, Sunnyland’s approach is rather formulaic in relation to previous creations and truly makes you believe its narrator is an un-infused and frustrated teenager.
Although a chunk of the album is rather predictable in its instrumental style and lyrical content, some tracks really pack a punch above the rest with its more mature approach to the Pop Punk/Emo genre including ‘Take My Breath Away’, ‘Where Are You’ and the albums final and most illuminating track ‘Sunnyland’.
The albums namesake and final track ‘Sunnyland’ talks from the perception of a much older and wiser narrator than previous tracks. Its relevance to the rest of the album is a poignant one due to its discussion of how life was much easier at a much younger age, to the extent of almost serving as a self-critical track of how his thoughts and feelings always turn to achieving that same sense of freedom from his adolescence, while also battling with the reality of adulthood.
Throughout the album a great sense of nostalgia to the early 2000’s Pop Punk scene is truly evident, but its closeness to that time frame hasn’t completely fulfilled a search for mature song writing many would come to expect with being over a decade in the business. The album shows some glimmer of hope in relation to songs written in the “here and the now”, but its progression stops and starts continuously in a battle between who the dominant party is between the Adult and the Adolescent.
The last addition to Sunnyland provides a more honest depiction as to why the album has a much younger feel in relation to the writer’s viewpoint, which makes it much easier to derive the fulfilment in recapturing their youth through the many levels of song writing contributions in the possible form of a concept album. Through reflection and perseverance Mayday Parade tried to capture the same driving force that made them come together as a band in the first place, which seems to have worked tremendously.
Even with its blatant goal to reclaim their younger selves, some people may find the album too repetitive in comparison to their earlier work, which may leave you scratching your head wondering if the bands perception of the present is blinded by reminiscing the past.