It’s been a long nine years since Chicago’s Madina Lake said their farewells following the release of their third full-length record, ‘World War III’.
Struggling to recuperate following a vicious attack upon bassist Matthew Leone in 2010, an indefinite break from the music scene seemed like the best way to heal. However, adjusting to a life without making music proved to be too great a struggle for the quartet.
Returning in 2017 for a six-date UK reunion tour, the band promised the release of new music. Staying true to their word, the aptly named ‘The Beginning of New Endings’ comes three years after their triumphant return.
Standing at a modest six tracks, the EP swells with new life. It’s quintessential Madina Lake, drained from a cask in which it has been steadily maturing over the last decade. Opener ‘Playing With Fire’ along with ‘Heart Of Gold’ especially pop and crackle with the flames of refined angst that singe the surrounding songs. Classic Madina cynicism seeps from lyrical accounts of new life lessons learned, while instrumentally the tracks benefit from a glossy contemporary coat without detracting from the pop-punk authenticity.
Keeping us on our toes, the pace is frequently shaken up. ‘Tiny Weapons’ experiments with different electronic textures throughout its near 9-minute runtime. Ending on a slower couplet of songs, the EP concludes as if it were a sonnet; a love letter to times passed and futures gained. Certainly, ‘Silver Lines’ and ‘No Rain’ diverge from older material the most in terms of sound and style, offering a teasing glimpse of what is yet to come.
With this EP, Madina Lake have displayed a profound ability to adapt to new surroundings without detracting from their overall essence. Without needing to depend heavily on nostalgia in 2020, the beginning of this new ending for Madina Lake brims with promise.
People’s poet. Music and film blogger. South Park goth kid.