Thursday, August 25, 2011

25 Albums. #21: I Am the Movie by Motion City Soundtrack

Motion City Soundtrack gets a pretty bad rep sometimes. I suppose being lumped into the same group as every other young pop group that poses as "punk" will do that to a band.

Unfortunately, I think a lot of people overlook the fact that Motion City Soundtrack, while they most definitely craft incredibly sugary hooks and poppy choruses, is that they owe a lot to the early 90's for their sound. Jawbox, Superchunk, Weezer, Sunny Day Real Estate... you can hear the influence that a lot of these bands had on Motion City Soundtrack. Particularly their first album, I Am the Movie. Having been a fan of some of these bands (Weezer, SDRE, and the Get Up Kids), the influence of 90's indie alternative and pop was something that I could hear as soon as I started listening to Motion City Soundtrack.

When I was 15 or so, I got a gift card for Christmas to a Sam Goody. I think it was a Sam Goody anyway. Either way, I used it to buy the first (at the time, only) Motion City Soundtrack album and it became my favorite thing ever for a few months. But I'm not including it on this list because I loved every track on the album (although it did help when I was selecting the albums). I'm including it because I Am the Movie has a million sounds on it but at heart it still remains a pop album. I listen to plenty of bands who hop around from genre-to-genre but Motion City Soundtrack found a way to meld them perfectly (one could argue that they perfected the sound on their most recent album, My Dinosaur Life, but that's for another time).

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