There’s very little solace to be found in Mineral Girls’ This Is the Last Time Every Time. The world the characters inhabit is an indifferent – if not outright cruel – one to be certain, but most of the anguish on display here comes from inside. “I’m not trying to get any better / I’m just trying to make it look like I am,” becomes something of a mantra for the record.
This Is the Last Time Every Time is an appropriate title for an album as concerned as this one is with trying to change. The title of the opener (from which comes the above lyric) is “Let’s Talk About Us,” after all. And the song is just as cathartic as it sounds. See, for all the intensity behind the lyrics, the band behind them matches it pound for pound. For the most part, they’ve ditched the fuzz from Cozy Body in favor of a rougher, more straightforward emo sound. “The Bruise on We” begins with a Mineral-style riff, building and building to a post-hardcore climax, complete with harsh shrieks. It’s the only moment like it on the album, but it feels totally necessary. Elsewhere, like the title track, the band introduces electronics into their sound.
About halfway through the pseudo title track “This Is the Last Time” comes an instrumental break that wouldn’t feel out of place in a post rock song. It’s a beautiful, calming moment that comes midway through what otherwise feels like a panic attack. The guitar weaves in and out steadily like breathing trying to regulate itself. It’s rare on an album like This Is the Last Time Every Time to get a moment like that, but I think that makes it a little bit more beautiful. The brief respite is a reminder that maybe this isn’t the only way to live.