Masked Intruder - Masked Intruder (Cover Artwork)

Masked Intruder

Masked Intruder: Masked IntruderMasked Intruder (2012)
Red Scare

Reviewer Rating: 3.5
User Rating:

Contributed by: NatashaSNatashaS
(others by this writer | submit your own)

If you're familiar with Wisconsin's Masked Intruder, you'll know exactly what to expect from their self-titled full-length debut. If not, just try to remember that guy or girl you met briefly at a party but weren't really into; then imagine said guy/girl showing up at your house at 3 a.m., wearing a.
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If you're familiar with Wisconsin's Masked Intruder, you'll know exactly what to expect from their self-titled full-length debut. If not, just try to remember that guy or girl you met briefly at a party but weren't really into; then imagine said guy/girl showing up at your house at 3 a.m., wearing a brightly colored balaclava and serenading you with a catchy pop punk ballad. This is how the members of Masked Intruder spend their evenings, and like all legitimate musicians, they share their life experiences through song. The band's latest offering contains an assortment of these irreverent stalker-style jams, in addition to coverage of their adventures in petty crime. It's all in good deranged fun though.

With a hyper catchy melody and prison sentence-inspired title, album opener "25 To Life" sets the tone for the rest of the record. Despite the syrupy nature of the song, there's an endearing quality in lyrics like, "In a world of nightmares you're a sweet, sweet dream / Just about the prettiest thing that I've ever seen."

"How Do I Get to You" tells the classic tale of an ill-fated love‚??not only one-sided, but further prevented by incarceration‚??with simple yet effective harmonies layered on top of an infectious melody. Lyrically, the song is more indicative of the record as a whole, with lead vocalist Blue lamenting, "You just can't charm a lady with a knife / But that sucks cause that's all I know how to do."

"Unrequited Love" tugs at the heart strings, with melancholy lyrics like, "Every single day is lonelier than the last / Cried so many tears that I had to wring out my mask." The song fuses the fundamentals of pop punk with a throwback to the '50s, and a short but slick guitar solo contributes to making the song an album highlight. Similarly, "Am I Only Dreaming" recalls the essence of timeless pop songs, with guitarist, Green, and bass player, Yellow (AKA Orange), providing doo-wop style backup vocals.

It's clear that Masked Intruder have been practicing their harmonies while behind bars, showcased on several of the album's tracks. In particular, the harmonies scattered throughout "Hello Beautiful" complement the song's peppy charm perfectly, backing up Blue as he dejectedly sings, "I can tell just by the look that's in your eyes / That you don't consider this a nice surprise / Finding me here in your house."

Melodically pleasing track "Heart Shaped Guitar" features Mixtapes' Maura Weaver as the goaded voice of Blue's affections, with the two melding vocally to create a dynamic back-and-forth. Another standout on the record, "Wish You Were Mine," once again blends doo-wop and pop punk, with an a capella introduction that delves into a clean guitar riff and lively beat.

In between uptempo songs about stalking unsuspecting females, Masked Intruder changes pace with "Stick ‚??Em Up," which chronicles the band's passion for armed robbery. "Stick ‚??Em Up" deviates from the melodic ditties of the rest of the record and hits us with a punchy, fast-paced sound. The band takes their victim on a two-minute journey, detailing just what's about to go down. Essentially, the message we can take from the song is not to mess with these guys when they want to get paid, as Blue is the first to let us know he's got a knife, motherfucker; it's a switchblade.

Masked Intruder's first full-length release combines elements conducive to producing a successful pop punk record‚??the album is short, sweet and insanely fun. The lyrical absurdity can also be overlooked; performed with such sincerity, the record almost comes across as a collection of genuine love songs (and one about robbing someone at knifepoint). It's easy to question the longevity of Masked Intruder‚??a band built on novelty‚??but love or loathe the gimmick, their melodies are undeniably joyful. These masked miscreants can stalk me any time.


People who liked this also liked:
The Menzingers - On the Impossible PastNOFX - Punk In DrublicThe Menzingers - Chamberlain WaitsThe Lawrence Arms - Oh! Calcutta!The Clash - London CallingTeenage Bottlerocket - Freak Out!Descendents - Milo Goes To CollegeAgainst Me! - is Reinventing Axl RoseNOFX - The DeclineThe Gaslight Anthem - Sink or Swim

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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
madapril (November 28, 2013)

Diluted knock off on Turbonegro. Oh but they wear ski masks? Nevermind

capnrad (November 7, 2013)

Late to the party but holy crap is this catchy

Bochini (May 13, 2013)

The vocals are bad and ruin the whole sound of the band. I can take the boring and unoriginal nature of the songs, the basic lyrics and the gimmicky way they present themselves but those vocals i can't stand. They should stop singing or get another singer i don't know this is a really bad record.
This is not punk pop, this is over produced pop punk without an edge.

arojass (February 6, 2013)

Some of the best stuff I've listen through this year. A must listen!

remy_rat (September 19, 2012)

Perfect debut album.

dannydeadhack (September 9, 2012)

This record is so much fun on so many different levels. It's the epitome of what pop-punk is and should be. I can't get enough.

skolarx (September 5, 2012)

Stick Em Up really reminds me of Chixdiggit in the verses. Really enjoying this record a whole lot more than I enjoyed the new Bottlerocket album but maybe slightly less than the Mixtapes new album

cbsrocksteady (August 21, 2012)

Total Chixdiggit! / NUFAN vibe. Tony would be proud :( Love it to death.

MN_DrNick (August 15, 2012)

Of course Echos doesn't like the best pop punk album of the year.


levidolphin (August 15, 2012)

"Stick em up stick em up stick em up i got a knife mother fucker stick em up"
I dont know why i like it but i do

kidgotham (August 15, 2012)

Echos, I also really liked the Dan Vapid record too, but the second half is much, much better than the first. The Masked Intruders record is consistantly good.

kidgotham (August 15, 2012)

One of the best, if not the best, pop punk records of the year.

greg0rb (August 15, 2012)

I ignored every post we put up about this band (which seemed to be at least one a week over the summer) but I am just now listening. Pretty fucking good. The girl-group style harmonies make it. I'm a sucker for that shit.

Wendigo (August 15, 2012)

... Great review, NatashaS...


EchosMyron (August 15, 2012)

Umm, no it is not, idiot. Dan Vapid and the Cheat`s self-titled debut annihilates it on every level.

thisrespirator (August 14, 2012)

This is the best album of this style of pop-punk this year.

kidpresentable (August 14, 2012)

Remove 'heart shaped guitar' from this record and you got yourself a solid release.

Thumbs (August 14, 2012)

I said I wouldn't (as I hated the EP), but I checked out the stream this morning.
It's really boring, but what really bothers me is the vocals. How the fuck did someone say "You're it! You're the singer!"?
Such a terrible voice.

Thumbs down.

irish_punk_is_gimmickry (August 14, 2012)

wisco pride, this album rules!!

baseball (August 14, 2012)

I'm not usually one to be into something quite this poppy but these songs are just so undeniably catchy. They've been stuck in my head constantly. Reminds me a lot of Chixdiggit.

Apeman_on_the_moon (August 14, 2012)

Can't wait to see these guys at Triple Rock. I don't know how to give things stars. I give this 8 stars.

RedScare (August 14, 2012)

One of my favorite releases we've ever put out, and they're even more fun live. They just did this goofy ‚?Ětrack by track‚?Ě thing with Alt Press if you wanna get all deep and inner-layer* and shit:

http://www.altpress.com/features/entry/track_by_track_ma sked_intruder_masked_Intruder

* Joking, of course.

WhiskeyandRecords (August 14, 2012)

I love it, so much fun to listen to

killtaker (August 14, 2012)

Super fun record...very catchy as well. Personally I think the lyrics are kind of clever.

Sliced-T (August 14, 2012)

I like the songs. Don't like the production. Too glossy.

Bryne (August 14, 2012)

Good review. Write more, NatashaS!

EchosMyron (August 14, 2012)

Sounded like a less-catchy, less-funny Chixdiggit! imitation to my ears. When will these pop punk bands realize that inventive/weird lyrics are CRUCIAL to one`s enjoyment of their albums?

jacknife737 (August 14, 2012)

This album is so much fun: goddamn.

Give a lonley masked man a chance!

gettingdown (August 14, 2012)

Love the songs, but everything sounds so computery.

mattramone (August 14, 2012)

Also, Maura Weaver NAILS IT so hard on "Heart Shaped Guitar" that she and the MI singer need to do a Otis Redding/Carla Thomas style duets album.

mattramone (August 14, 2012)

Call the police, these dudes stole my heart.

slymer (August 14, 2012)

rules hard

MN_DrNick (August 14, 2012)

This rules.

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