Channelling Bring Me The Horizon, My Chemical Romance (‘Planetary (GO!), ‘DESTROYA’) and The 1975 (‘People’), new You Me At Six track ‘MAKEMEFEELALIVE is a spiritual successor to Sinners Never Sleep and Night People, making pop-oriented albums Cavalier Youth and VI feel even more like footnotes than vital entries in the band’s impressive discography.
The boys from Surrey have always sounded their best when tracking heavier songs (‘Bite My Tongue’, ‘Room To Breathe’), and MMFA has already been hailed as a promising return to form.
Abandoning the genre-bending sounds of their anthemic stopgap singles ‘What It’s Like’ and ‘Our House (The Mess We Made)’, this first offering from the band’s yet-to-be-revealed seventh studio record is a streamlined punk song that trades the bells and whistles of its predecessors for pure rock carnage.
Lead singer Josh Franceschi opens the 2019 ‘What’s It Like’ by professing ‘I try to sound like the 75‘, and takes this inspiration and admiration a bit too far here. MMFA has been criticised for its overt resemblance to Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships single ‘People’, though You Me At Six’s song is heavier and more biting than its 1975 counterpart.
Continuing the political messaging of ‘What It’s Like’ and ‘Our House’, Josh screams his dissatisfaction about how we are ‘divided as a nation‘ and society’s apparent indifference to fake news. The short track ends abruptly, as the Josh in the music video reclaims his eye from the mysterious thugs who attack him. The band’s cryptic messaging (particularly on their creepy 2020invasionvi Twitter and Instagram accounts) hints at something grander, and the story of the music video certainly seems incomplete. Could this be You Me At Six’s first attempt at a true concept album?
While the answer remains to be clear, MMFA is a promising start to this all new era of You Me At Six, which sees them heading to heavier directions than they’ve ever explored before.