Review: mewithoutYou – [Untitled]

mewithoutYou - [Untitled]

After the release and touring of 2015’s revelationary Pale Horses, mewithoutYou needed to find some space before the apocalypse turned inwards. Vocalist Aaron Weiss relocated to Idaho with his family, a makeshift home studio rig and MIDI keyboard while the rest of his bandmates (including his brother Mike) remained in Philadelphia workshopping new ideas with producer Will Yip. There’s that one saying, you know, that distance makes the heart grow fonder? Well for the genre-defying quintet, distance also made the creativity flow more freely than every before, while some inner-band tensions and relationship strife served as the impetus to untapped creativity and fueled the [Untitled] recording sessions with Yip, yielding 19 new songs (spanning one EP and one LP, both sharing the same name) that showcase the duality within mewithoutYou’s dazzling soundscape.

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Review: mewithoutYou – it’s all crazy! it’s all false! it’s all a dream! it’s alright

mewithoutYou – it’s all crazy! it’s all false! it’s all a dream! it’s alright

It’s not often you hear an album described as being accessible and polarizing at the same time, but that’s exactly what happened with it’s all crazy! it’s all false! it’s all a dream! it’s alright, the fourth studio album from mewithoutYou. It’s always been Aaron Weiss’ poetic vision set to post-hardcore that leaned on angst and shouting. But on it’s all crazy, Weiss and company have exchanged that noise for something simpler, as the group focused more on their melodic and folk influences.

Don’t let the lack of riffs and electric guitars fool you though, it’s all crazy is still an intense and passionate mewithoutYou album, just this time it is channeled into pianos, accordions, and lavish compositions. Opening track, “every thought a Thought of You,” is upbeat, as electronic piano chords and a steady drum beat pace Weiss’ poetic verses. The bass lines from Greg Jehanian’s are absolutely pleasant, as it livens up the track even more. Lyrically, Weiss is still exploring theological themes, delving into the Bible and the Qur’an for lyrical inspiration.

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Review: mewithoutYou – Brother, Sister

mewithoutYou - Brother, Sister

Last summer, my friend Scott Weber told me I must get into mewithoutYou—that they are a pivotal band, creative and non-linear—every five-dollar word Pitchfork Media would use to worship a Sufjan Stevens or Mogwai album. Putting it nicely, I thought they were rather over-the top and boring at the same time. Where were the driving choruses and upbeat melodies? I mean you have to have one or the other right? Fast forward almost a year later and I’m singing their praises, first acknowledging the pure poetry of their art—from there it was all butter. 

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