Sound: Perspective and context are vital when it comes to music; a good album can be an average album if it comes from your favourite band and a great debut can set the bar astronomically high. The World I Want To Leave Behind' is Moneen's fourth album and they seem to have a pretty solid fanbase but it's my very first foray into their world, so excuse my ignorance. Things seem to be pretty ship-shape though; Kenny Bridges' pop-punk vocals act as a launching pad for all kinds of artistic ventures, especially for the guitars provided by Chris Hughes and Bridges himself. The album is mixed in such a way that the balance between instruments can remain nice and even whilst just about every moment is decorated with a refreshing guitar lick or (even better) a nice juicy lead.
There is an air of the artsy about the band, but when the songs really hit their stride the whole thing overflows and their honesty emerges unharmed. The songs and melodies drift into each other pleasantly, and despite the odd tracklisting (ballads always come in pairs, for some reason) everything falls into place pretty effortlessly. Punchier songs do of course appear, very successfully in the case of the infectious Great Escape' or the masterfully orchestrated closer The Glasshouse'; these and other heavier songs act as landmarks as you make your way through the album, often guided by new drummer Steve Nunnaro. // 8
Lyrics: Along with a departure from their typically long song titles, Moneen look like they've brought their lyrics down to basics as well. Personal themes take centre-stage but there's no mincing of words here, with songs probably written more as an outlet for the lyricist than a piece designed for an audience. As a singer Kenny Bridges has a pretty standard voice for a Canadian rock band, but hits all the right spots with a big ole dollop of soul' and links in with the guitar well, which is a big source of the band's appeal for me. It's also worth mentioning that the backing vocals on this album are very impressive indeed, especially on the aforementioned Glasshouse' and presumed single Hold That Sound'. // 7
Overall Impression: Ultimately The World I Want To Leave Behind' has been a good introduction to Moneen, and by the sound of their older stuff, it's also a fitting addition to their discography. A couple of tracks are easily glossed over (Believe' comes to mind) and some songs do lose their impetus after a while but there's a few real gems that more than make up for it. Definitely recommended for fans of The Get Up Kids or Brand New. // 8
- Duncan Geddes aka duncang (c) 2009