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It must be tough to be a skate-punk band with anti-authoritarian lyrics and a definite Christian bent for more than a dozen years and not switch up the formula at least a little bit. In the case of the mildly popular MXPX, their music continues to morph from the left of the dial towards the right on their tenth album. This is not a bad thing, per se. "Darkest Places" is the kind of anthem they've always excelled at, and even covered in the thick candy coating of radio-sheen production, it packs a mighty wallop. The real weak link in the band at this point is vocalist Mike Herrera. He sounds fine when reverbed and multitracked and whatever else on the choruses, but his flat delivery on many of the songs is just not enough to carry them now that they're no longer angry diatribes. He's just no Milo, you know? That said, his words are pretty ironic and great, and they do help make "Young and Depressed" and "Wrecking Hotel Rooms" into classic teen angst pop-punk songs, absolutely begging to be heard in the latest teen blockbuster. There's a reason all those old school rockers had backing singers; perhaps MXPX could borrow a few from Rod Stewart? He doesn't seem very busy these days. --Mike McGonigal
Over the past ten years, MXPX have sold well over a million records in the US. "Panic" features their trademark sound, while adding more mature themes lyrically. They're one of the Warped main stage headliners and they'll follow that up with a full US tour in the fall.
Buy Panic by MxPx from our Christian Music store - isbn: 0012335495 upc: 603967126921
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