Sound: The Atlanta five-piece incorporates elements of several of the most respected rockers—both mainstream and indie—of the last 20 years. At times, their radio-ready and ‘90s-minded with crunchy riffs and piercing vocals (think Smashing Pumpkins) or grungy guitar and aggressive yelps (think Nirvana). Other times, their rootsy and more reserved, but dynamic (think Bright Eyes and My Morning Jacket). They’ll even combine punk aggression with country twang and bendy guitars and come up with something in the Modest Mouse realm. Unfortunately, though, sometimes the angsty catharsis approximates the grating, indulgent nature of Dashboard Confessional. But thankfully, that rage is more often released as Conor Oberst-esque, rollicking climaxes.
Heavy Rotation tracks: “My Friend Marcus”; “I’ve Got Friends”
Medium Rotation tracks: “The Only One”; “I Can Feel a Hot One”; “Tony the Tiger”
Recommended: The vision and ambition on Mean Everything to Everyone is refreshing. Though you can play name the influence throughout most of the album, Manchester Orchestra establishes itself as a promising young band ready to carve out their own page in music history. Hopefully, next time around, they’ll be a little more focused and establish more of their own identity. But this is a bold step in the right direction.