The Mae Shi

By Kathleen Perez on March 6, 2008

There is many a negative thing to say about the 2004 born Los Angeles band The Mae Shi. Their last three records, while mind bogglingly energetic, self-indulged with amateurish, for-the-hell-of-it time changes and squawking vocals. Essentially conglomerating the more obvious components of noise rock into punk-sized bites, their previous releases were weak albums with a sprinkling of powerhouse tracks ("Power to the Power Bite Two" and "Born for a Short Time"). Fortunately, The Mae Shi's latest release, HLLLYH, is the work of a band that has calmed down and grown up. Weaving the off-putting melodiousness of their new vocalist into considerably more beeping than guitar spazzing, these songs are linear (comparatively) and aren't bursting at the seams with more riffs than you can count. Despite more commitment to cohesive songs your brain can handle, they have not lost their spunk. Hailing, winding shrieks softened by the magic of technology draw the listener into Les Savvy Fav style spacing and chanting. Minimal, cracking guitar leads up to baby explosions of anthemic rock. Not to mention the Nintendo overtones that may be thanks to former label mates The Advantage. If nothing else, “PWND” is definitely worth a gander to everyone. I'm just so proud.

Kathleen Perez is the Alternative Music Director at KUPS 90.1 The Sound