Motion Picture Demise, “Zip.Boom.Hah.”
Between their first and second album Motion Picture Demise made a complete shift in musical direction. Once a Christian screamo group, the Virginian quintet suddenly abandoned its hoarse-throated mission and took a turn for the lurid and secular. Zip.Boom.Hah., their second album, finds them worshipping at the altars of Slash and Axl Rose. Chug-a-lug breakdowns are swapped for cocky, power chord-driven riffs; cathartic howls are discarded in favor of full-throated melodies. But MPD has yet to expunge its “emo” roots, which in turn saturate each of the album’s seven tracks. Zip opens strong with a buzzing, neon-lit guitar lead on “Causin’ a Stir,” which collapses into a pop punk song with thicker, more technically-able instrumentation. Regardless of its saccharine structure, the massive hook buries itself in listeners’ brains like an aural chisel. “The Way It Goes” follows closely behind with the same fervent energy and frenzied guitar and bass work; but this, too, crumbles, becoming an impotent whinefest begging someone to “let it go.” And with each song the cycle continues: veiny, potent riffs tease listener interest then recede into half-assed “emo” tunes with vague catchphrase lyrics like “we’ve got the new disease” and “just fail with me.” The faux-cock rock of “Inhuman Touch” attempts to salvage their harder aesthetic with diving fingertap parts and smutty lyrics, efforts which go up in smoke at the opening strums of the pillow-soaking acoustic ballad, “Innocent.” With this emo/hard rock hybrid sound Motion Picture Demise are damning themselves to audiences full of 14-year-olds whose only exposure to Guns N’ Roses is parental rants about the good old days. Instead, the group should seriously consider further developing their swaggering aesthetic and leave the “emo” for the eyeliner sect.