I have been a fan of the Arizona- based band, The Maine, for a while and even had the opportunity to chat with their guitarist, Kennedy Brock awhile back. It’s interesting to listen to how their sound evolves from album to album. Lovely Little Lonely is the sixth album from the band and debuted at number 32 on the Billboard 200 and rightfully so.This album is perhaps their most cohesive, free-flowing album yet. Seriously. The transitions from track to track are so smooth, it’s as if you’re listening to one long music score.
But before I get all preachy about how awesome this band is, let’s jump to the songs, shall we?
The first song I heard from their new album before it was fully released was “Bad Behavior” which was definitely more pop rock than their older music. This song is a celebratory anthem of The Maine being a band for 10 years and as sweet as they are, they have dedicated this song to their fans.
The song starts off very heavy with a clash of drums and guitar but quickly breaks off into a more pop-rock vibe later on. The track is filled with flirty lyrics and a crisp sound that has a more playful tone compared to the songs later in the album.
The album then smoothly transitions to one of the title tracks of the album – “Lovely.” “Lovely” sounds just like its name. It sort of leaves you in a lucid dream state and due to its light, airy tone. In a way, “Lovely” acts more of a transition song as it plays for 0:34 seconds and immediately you find yourself listening to the next song, “Black Butterflies and Déjà Vu.” If you aren’t paying close attention, due to the smooth transition, you would think these songs are one.
With an ebb and flow of a dreamy vibe and edgy rock, you can’t help but be mesmerized as you listen to “Black Butterflies and Déjà Vu.” I especially love how the dream-like sound matches the poetic words of the song. As the song states, it’s just “another lovesick afternoon.”
One of my favorite songs from the album is probably one of the more mellow songs off the record – “Taxi.” You know how you can listen to a song interpret it in a completely different way than someone else, well, this was one of those instances.
When I initially listened to the song prior to the release of the music video, I thought it was lighthearted given the sound of the acoustic guitar and scenes of careless, free love that the lyrics were giving me. But after watching the music video, man oh man was I definitely wrong. The song with its accompanying music video provides a darker message of how love can be quite deceiving. It reminds us that love can be blinding and leave us trusting ones who may end up hurting us the most.
The other title tracks, “Little” and “Lonely,” give off indie light vibes where both songs don’t have many lyrics but they’re delicate in the sense of the tone and mood the songs bring.
But after “Lonely” is probably another favorite off the album and that is “How Do You Feel?” The track reminds us that it’s okay to feel our emotions of sorrow, pain, love, and happiness. These emotions are what make us human. But if you strip down the song and take away the guitars, bass, and drums, there’s a particular lyric that stands out to me. The lyric of “You are alive but are you living?” really struck a chord with me and sort of brings this album and their previous album in a full circle.
In the band’s fifth album, American Candy, there’s a track called “24 Floors” that deals with having depression and suicidal tendencies. But if you listen closely to the lyrics, you realize that there is hope and as one who has anxiety, the words of “Take one more breath to clear your mind” is a lyric worth repeating.
In contrast, with the song “How Do You Feel?” it sort of acts a reminder to live life to the fullest and though, our emotions are constantly changing and we have our own share of good days and bad ones, it’s important to fully live your life despite what it may throw your way.
Overall, Lovely Little Lonely isn’t my favorite album from the band but I did see the band grow more as artists and as songwriters. I still dig the playful and fun vibe that their album, American Candy, offered but this current album truly shows how the band continues to evolve and dive deeper into their emotions. Lovely Little Lonely shows how the band continues to hold on to their indie alternative rock roots but now, they get to showcase a bit of a darker and edgier sound that they haven’t shown before.