Thursday, April 5, 2012

The Best Played Plans

It isn't exactly Robert Burns (Steinbeck just used a line for his novel) or even the magnitude of Ezekiel's Wheels within Wheels but Plans Within Plans, the latest release by Bremerton, Washington Punk Rockers MxPx (The name was supposed to be Magnified Plaid, but someone thought the periods on the small poster were an x So MxPx it became. Seriously, would you listen to a band named Magnified Plaid) is equally momentous. The album marks the bands return to the recording studio for an original album in five years (a Covers album On The Cover II came out in 2009).

I'm not a big punk rock fan, though I am a fan of several punk acts, most notably Bleach. Of course bleach was known for longer songs. Actually that's the biggest gripe I have with this album. It goes bye too fast. I could call it speed punk. I know that it isn't true, because the album is around 35 minutes long, but it goes by fast. Of the thirteen songs on the album, nine of them clock in at under three minutes in length and one of them, Screw Loose, clocks in at just over one minute in length.

The album opens with one of my favorite songs on the album, Playing Aces, and the line "You may have to bluff sometimes". Considering that my novel in progress has my heroine (at least one of them) as a lady gambler in the old west, I think this would be her song.

The album is a speed rush. If you are looking for a slow ballad breather, there isn't one. If you're an adrenaline junkie, this is your album.  Actually, The Times would probably be considered an MxPx slow song, but to nobody else.

The album grows on you, and the songs will get quickly stuck in your head. In a good way. The album is a memorable one in that it marks the bands Twenty Year mark. Not many CCM bands these days last twenty years, much less put out such good music after all that time. The norm is to start mailing it in and living on ones reputation. Not these guys.

I would be doing a disservice to my readers if I did not give you the opportunity to experience a bit of the band. I close my review with a live performance of Far Away, the ninth cut on the album.

I am going to give Plans Within Plans a final rating of 4.75 Emeralds this album is Pure Platinum Punk, though not Perfectly Pure, if only because it is so short. I want more MxPx. We shall see a lot more from this band as the Third Platinum Vinyl Awards takes shape. Check it out, let me know what your opinion of the band is. If you choose to buy, please do so at the link and help support The Night Beat. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.