The Menzingers – Hello Exile

The Menzingers - Hello Exile (Epitaph)

Fully equipped and ready for the storm, Philadelphia band The Menzingers have the tenacity to pull us in and ruffle us up. Tearjerkers are strewn like posted notes written in red lipstick on their new record Hello Exile. This isn’t a bad thing, as this act are prone to the common depressive feelings, feelings of sorrow and despair and problematic instances. Preparing for a battle is what this band do so well. Delivering emotive songs is their trademark, and they do it effortlessly.

Swollen clouds hang high. Bittersweet memories float off into the optimistic part of the brain. Little snapshots of misery hurt like hell and troubles brew. On Hello Exile the lyrics point at suffering, alcohol abuse, drug misuse, and the trappings of a broken home. This doesn’t overtake the beauty of the music or mark it with a target which is awaiting to be pulverized.

Aging youth is explored, political mayhem pushed to the forefront. Hello Exile is like a drug that sends a rush up the arms. Creatively it’s majestic, lyrically it’s complex and story driven. From the start to the conclusion, we’re all in it together, caught up in the hysteria.

Hello Exile is a monumental album for the disenchanted and the youth who are straying off. “Anna” commits to the formula so well, and the lyrics pinpoint desolation and loneliness. The guitars are intricately involved. Anna is the girl who has departed. “Hello Exile” is a poignant, guitar driven exploration of hopelessness. Alleyways are filled with ghosts. “Strain Your Memory” offers a stylish drumbeat and chords. Again, the lyricism is mesmerizing. Through the gust of pain, times are rough. “London Drugs” is another sad song. Drugs are decaying the man and his wisdom. The beat is great here, offering diverse instrumentals.

The Menzingers are brilliant. It’s speculative to say they’re the perfect band, but to many, they’re the band to listen to when the world is in disarray.

Words: Mark McConville
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