If you have not heard of these guys, then I truly don’t know what you’re doing with your life.
A local band from Scranton, PA, The Menzingers have certainly came a long way from their roots. With Tom May and Greg Barnett splitting the vocals and on guitar, Eric Keen on bass and Joe Godino on drums, these four men have catapulted their careers from their early days playing at skate parks.
Looking back at the early times, The Menzingers formed as a formal collaboration of “Bob and the Sagets” (featuring Tom May, Joe Godino, Eric Keen, and non-Menzinger member Curtis Ayers) and “Kos Mos” (featuring Greg Barnett, Adam Mcilwee of Tigers Jaw, and Leo Vergnetti of Captain, We’re Sinking!) Since then, The Menzingers have seen much fame and are currently touring with A Day to Remember and Rise Against.
After releasing their first full-length album “A Lesson in the Abuse of Information Technology” from Go-Kart Records in 2007, The Menzingers quickly found they had a large dedicated fan base. “A Lesson” was the first time I heard a band like The Menzingers and I automatically fell in love. Only two years later in 2009, The Menzingers released a 4-song EP titled “Hold On, Dodge.” Even though it was only an EP, it was an instant hit with tracks like “Sunday Morning,” “They Speak of My Drinking but Never My Thirst,” and the bonus track “Kentucky Gentlemen.” Even now, I still blast those songs in my car and sing along like it was the first time I heard it.
When the Menzingers announced a second full-length album in the works, fans everywhere waited in anticipation. The recent success and growth as a band even landed them on the 100th issue of AMP Magazine in April 2010. Once that happens, you know you’re doing things right.
“Chamberlain Waits” was released on April 13, 2010 off Red Scare Industries. The album was another instant hit and was even Punknews.org’s No. 1 album of 2010. After listening to the album, maturity was obvious with their change of style. The change, however, was not bad like most bands. As “A Lesson” was more raw punk, “Chamberlain Waits” had it’s own unique sound with songs such as “Times Tables” and “I Was Born” being the icon of that album. The one thing that I can pinpoint about the Menzingers is how they make you feel when you are listening. Whether you’re in a good mood or a somber one, they have tracks for it all. One thing is clear, the songs reach out to you and suck you in, leaving you wanting more and more as the tracks never seem to get old.
Since the previous release, the Menzingers have recently announced a third album titled, “On the Impossible Past.” It is clear that The Menzingers are quite humbled to be in the position they are in, and the album title says it all. Two singles have been released as of now, “The Obituaries” and “Gates.” When “The Obituaries” was first released to the public, it gained 10,000 listens in less than 24 hours on soundcloud.com. As a result, drummer Joe shaved the anarchy symbol onto his chest from a dare and just pure excitement of the track’s success. However, many fans had a mixed reaction when “Gates” was released. The track was not the usual sound that fans have grown accustomed to and was much more soft. It will be very interesting to see what direction the band goes in once the album debuts. “On the Impossible Past” is set for release later this month on February 21 off of Epitaph Records.
I, for one, have had the luxury to see The Menzingers live. They are absolutely amazing and each time I see then just keeps getting better and better. At the December 23rd Christmas Show held in Scranton, PA, Greg made a statement to the crowd that just proves they appreciate every step they have taken so far.
“We really wanted to come back out here and play a show for you guys in our hometown just to show you that we didn’t forget where we came from.”
That, my friends, is hard to come by with any band who has been successful.
The Menzingers are currently on tour with A Day to Remember and Rise Against and are also planning a spring tour in which they will be headlining with some of their best friends. The details have not yet been released, but I can assure anyone who hasn’t seen them to check them out because it will be an experience of a lifetime. Nothing can be more fun than seeing The Menzingers playing on the ground where you’re face to face with them screaming every word.
Keep an eye on these guys, they’re certainly going to be turning some heads in the future.
Check them out on facebook: http://www.facebook.com/themenzingers