The new music of Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness teleports you to the middle of the concrete jungle, with skyscrapers towering above you, the Brooklyn Bridge in the background and a barrage of taxi horns and subway cars whirling past in an interconnected loop.
On Feb. 10, McMahon released his new album “Zombies on Broadway.”
The album pays homage to living in the city but also to life in general. It can be easily compared to a Broadway production about love and loss, which gives the album its charm.
McMahon is most well known for the song “Cecilia And The Satellite,” which was a heartfelt ballad about the lengths he would go to for his daughter, off his previous self-titled album.
McMahon keeps true to the sincerity that fans loved from his last album. Each song tells its own story of new connections and hardships, fluidly adapting around the listener’s own personal experiences while also shedding light on some of the situations McMahon and his colleagues have been through.
“Birthday Song” tells a particularly interesting story about a party that has gone on far too long. The ballad gives advice to an individual who needs to take the reins and own up to their responsibilities by trying to get through to them that “It’s not your day / So blow out your candles / It’s better than letting them burn out.”
Before the release date, McMahon released five singles off this album including “So Close,” “Don’t Speak for Me (True)” and “Brooklyn, You’re Killing Me.” Each song was better than the last and, looking at the album as a whole now, I believe these tracks gave the fans a fair representation of how the album was going to sound.
The album touches on the personal struggles of working long days to try to give his family a life in “Dead Man’s Dollar” while also focusing on the rush of newfound connections in “Fire Escape.” As a whole, the album is full of drama, again drawing on the atmosphere of a stage production.
Every song on the album has a drastically different tempo from the next. So while the album starts off in a fast-paced frenzy, it ends at a slower melody. The difference in pace is well-balanced, making a steady descent from the energetic songs to the more melodic tunes.
This album is a must on your playlist. The album gets its charm from its meaningful lyrics and the heart that’s put into every word and chord. The songs were written for the fans, and it shows.
In the song “Love and Great Buildings,” McMahon says, “the best things are designed to stand the test of time.” This album is one of those things; it’ll leave a lasting impression on the memory of every listener and I can guarantee you won’t be able to get the catchy lyrics out of your head.
Alexis Miller is a sophomore media arts and design and psychology double major. Contact Alexis at email@example.com.