Posted in Faith, Nonfiction

Our Little Boys are Growing Up!: Mutemath’s Armistice.

Mutemath’s sophomore album (if you’re only counting the full-length LPs and the Warner Bros.’ releases) dropped two days ago. I preordered it, something I’d never done in the several years that I’ve had iTunes, so I was almost startled Tuesday at the crack of midnight, when it became available to me. (What? So soon?) I downloaded it immediately thereafter. I was flying to Grand Rapids from Baltimore that day, so I didn’t get a chance to listen to it in earnest until I was at the airport, and even then I resisted.

You want your first listen to a new project by your favorite band of all time to be exclusive and undivided and hallowed.

So when we boarded the plan at 2:20 pm, only to learn from our pilot that we’d be captive on the tarmac for at least an hour, I finally pulled out my iPod.

I’ll admit that, on first listen, I wasn’t entirely impressed with this album. There are songs on it that practically scream: “Maybe this’ll be the one that lands us that headlining gig at Madison Square Garden!”

I almost let myself feel a bit betrayed—and I’m usually not one of those toolish indie band fans who gets genuinely irritated when its band “goes mainstream.” I’m usually not one of those people who has to stand on a soapbox and rage into a bullhorn, “I knew them when! I had them first! You don’t deserve them!”

Because it’s pretty lame to get downright proprietary about people you don’t even know.

Even so, this wasn’t the Mutemath to which I’d grown accustomed. The sounds on Armistice are milder, quieter, tamer (appropriate, given the album title, but still). Whither the Paul who shouted through most of the tracks, backed by frenetic percussion and landfill-funky bass? Whither the songs that allow you to envision exactly the moment at which Paul will handstand on his organ in concert? These songs simply weren’t as full of bangs and blasts and crackles and roars.

One thing seemed certain: gone were the days of the Atari.

Rest of the article and video after the jump.