Manchester Orchestra ‘Simple Math’ Album Review

Manchester Orchestra certainly knows how to bring different types of intensity to their music on every album they have released, including their recently released album Simple Math, which just came out Tuesday, May 10th. This new album straps you into a roller coaster fueled by the dynamics of each song. Lead singer, Andy Hull, carries us through the album with his distinct voice that is painted with their southern background, and lyrics that are infused with a hint of his ministerial ancestry. The album also introduces quite a selection of texture and mediums ranging from squealing horns to sympathetic strings.

Manchester Orchestra leads us through their concept album of a man’s internal struggle, his regrets, and his monologues about accepting the responsibilities of what has happened in his life. The album starts off with “Deer,” an image of the band’s character on stage giving an apologetic and realization themed soliloquy. Andy addresses those in need of an apology…

“Dear everyone I ever really knew,
I acted like an asshole so I could keep my edge on you.
Ended up abusing even those I thought immune.
I killed the kingdom with one move and now it’s time to move.
Dear everybody that has paid to see my band,
It’s still confusing, we’ll never understand.
I acted like an asshole so my albums would never burn.”

“Virgin” is that track on the album that will shake you. It is the climax of the album for sure, and yes, it puts you on the edge of your seat. The song is completely full and satisfying in every sense. The track features a melodic, constant beat from the guitars, drums, and bass while screaming trumpets and various horns accent them. Not to mention another interesting aspect they throw into the mix; a ghostly chorus of children that chant with him on the chorus, “We built this house with our hands, and our time, and our blood…”

“Virgin” bleeds itself into the album’s single, “Simple Math.” The orchestra of strings that wrap around Andy’s timid and subtle voice will entrance you. Throughout the song, you understand the character’s stage of confusion as he asks himself a series of questions to take steps towards figuring out the truth with simple math.

The album ends with “Leaky Breaks,” where the guitars frolic around in a playful bluesy manner, bending and skipping to its own beat. Once again, Andy’s voice is very soft like in most the other tracks, he almost whispers his regrets and howls off until the track’s faded end. This is definitely an album that will move you in all directions.

For more information on Manchester Orchestra check out their official website, Myspace, Facebook, and Twitter pages. Get Simple Math now on iTunes.

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