Sound — 10
Alright, I wasn't too satisfied with the other review written for this album, so I decided to write a more in-depth one. Relient K has released 3 studio albums and all have been met with good reviews. The band garnered a 2004 Vibe award for "Best Rock/Alternative Album", and was nominated for a Grammy in 2003 for their album "Two Lefts Don't Make a Right... but Three Do". Prior to the release of Mmhmm, lead singer Matt Thiessen said that this album was by far the one they were most satisfied with and that they couldn't wait to release it. So is it all it's cracked up to be? Indeed it is. The sound on Mmhmm is different from their others, but it is a markedly improved one. The most notable change is the bigger presence of lead singer Matt Thiessen's piano playing. He is a very talented pianist, and this new addition makes the songs much more interesting. The trademark guitars are still ever-present, with nice guitar riffs thrown in here and there throughout. The drumming, provided by Dave Douglas, is also very well done and the rhythms are excellent. The harmonies are astounding, and all the singers (there are several guest appearances on the album) nail the pitches perfectly. Also, in certain parts of some songs, you can definitely detect a Beach Boys influence, which is very interesting for a band known more for pop-punk. It does not, however, sound out of place, and makes the songs more fun to listen to. Many of the songs have a slightly heavier sound, while others slow down the pace, such as "Let It All Out" and "When I Go Down."
Lyrics — 10
Matt Thiessen has always been known for his keen wit and tongue-in-cheek humor in his lyrics, and he delivers yet again on Mmhmm. For example, "My Girl's Ex-Boyfriend" is a song thanking his, well, girl's ex-boyfriend, for breaking up with his girlfriend so he could be with her. Thiessen is also much more open with his lyrics, crying out to God to help him get through all the trials in life. Whether one shares his faith or not, anyone can relate to these honest lyrics.
Overall Impression — 10
Overall, an excellent album. Gems like "Be My Escape", "Which To Bury, Us Or The Hatchet", and "Who I am Hates Who I've Been" make this an album that you could listen to all day. While some albums tend to tail off in quality towards the end, Mmhmm may actually improve. I would definitely recommend purchasing it legally.