Maxeen - Maxeen (Cover Artwork)


Maxeen: MaxeenMaxeen (2003)
Side One Dummy Records

Reviewer Rating: 4

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

Earlier this year SideOneDummy announced the signing of a seemingly unknown LA band called Maxeen. Curious I checked out the tracks available from their website, and amongst a few promising live recordings was a demo of a ska-tinged early-Police style tune called "Love Goes A Long Way." For me.
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Earlier this year SideOneDummy announced the signing of a seemingly unknown LA band called Maxeen. Curious I checked out the tracks available from their website, and amongst a few promising live recordings was a demo of a ska-tinged early-Police style tune called "Love Goes A Long Way." For me it was an affirmation of the how great a promotional tool the Net can be for bands, as the file sat proudly on my computer's desktop like an everyday application. Open Email. Launch Mozilla. Play "Love Goesâ?¦"

Months later the band's self-titled debut album is here and it more than lives up to expectations.

A lot of credit goes to producer Ed Stasium (Ramones, Talking Heads) for properly capturing the band, as the recording has a ton of energy and sounds fantastic. It would have been a mistake to slow things down, smooth out the edges and build everything around the pop-qualities of Tom Bailey's voice. Instead the band blazes through twelve tracks with abandon, committing to disc some of the most catchy and unique punk/pop in recent memory.

There's a strong new-wave influence on Maxeen's debut, but new-wave in the edgy guitar-pop revisionist vein as opposed to the synth-pop that bands are mining nowadays. Its impossible not to make the Police comparison, as both bands could share the description of a vocalist / bassist lead three piece with a penchant for nervous pop-rock with elements of ska and reggae. However Maxeen goes further, speeding into both Elvis Costello and Pixies territory when Sting & co would have been slowing things down for a ballad.

There's no shortage of great songs here, most with layered hooks that should leave the tracks in your head for hours. "Strangers" and "Soleil" are great examples of the band's songwriting approach. Guitarist Shannon McMurray give a nod to U2's anthems with "Lead Not Follow." The relaxed "White Flag" provides a great counter to the frenetic "Shuffle My Feet" and "Take The Weight Off." My aforementioned gem "Love Goes A Long Way" is present in a more up-tempo and energetic recording than the demo. While music this poppy and upbeat may turn off those looking for something edgier, Maxeen's smart enough from instrumentation and songwriting perspectives that they should have a wide appeal.

Maxeen has such a great sense of good pop-songwriting and such an energetic delivery that it should be impossible to keep them hidden in the underground for very long. They take great 80s post-punk as a starting point but quickly kill any notion that they'll be limited to a revival-act. This band can and will be huge, mark my words.


People who liked this also liked:
Les Breastfeeders - Les Matins de Grands SoirsMilky Ways - Milky WaysToys That Kill - Shanked!The Undertones - The UndertonesThe Deadly Snakes - Porcella -or- A Bird in the Hand Is Worthless [12 inch, double LP]Green Day - WarningBouncing Souls - The Gold RecordThe Marked Men - Fix My BrainTeenage Bottlerocket - TotalBouncing Souls - Hopeless Romantic

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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.
Anonymous (April 16, 2004)

ooooooo this is a great album. yum yum.

Anonymous (April 16, 2004)

maxeen is hott w/ rock! they put on great live shows...

Anonymous (January 26, 2004)

Bought this today. I like it a lot.

Anonymous (January 7, 2004)

i saw these guys open up for the slackers, after the aggrolites. I know, it makes no sense. Anyway, they sucked, but my pap liked them. Go figure.

Anonymous (December 6, 2003)

Incredible guitar riffs, friendly guys, great live performance...Go and check this band out live!!! you'll change you mind real quick if you didn't like what you heard on here!

Anonymous (November 28, 2003)

I was really excited to pick up the lost Police record called Maxeen. Sting sounds great on all the songs. I love how he uses parts of all his other police songs and takes a bit of everyone and puts them into every song on this cd. I also love how Sting stu,stu,stu,stu,studders the first word of every verse. This is a must for any Sting and Police Fan.

Anonymous (November 26, 2003)

First caught them on the Warped Tour - Then got their demo CD. Then caught them at the Whisky - then bought the new album. It's all good. This is what a "live" band is supposed to be. It isn't '83, 93, or 2003 copy - it's just kick-ass good - and it does stick in your head!

Anonymous (November 26, 2003)

originality is the sum of all influences interpreted and put together in a unique package. these guys have a lot of flavors to their music which give them a wide appeal. great lyrical hooks, awesome energy and outstanding players. can't help goin away hummin their tunes

Anonymous (November 25, 2003)

Just wanted to make the comment that, not only is they're music something uncommon and newer for a change, but Tom Baliey happens to be my blood cousin and I've known the guy my entire life, therefore I know for a fact he is such an awesome guy! Very down to earth and true, very hard to come by these days and believe me when I say this, if they go big, it's very much deserved!!

Anonymous (November 23, 2003)

Come on now, who are these guys kidding. I mean it's cool to have influences but i am not down with totally jacking style. Have some fucking originality. This is what's wrong with music today. Hey maxeen put the police cd's down and try writing some of your own riffs. I hate this band!

Anonymous (November 22, 2003)

awful. lacks creativity. and the choruses make my ears bleed.

Jesse (November 21, 2003)

ZING!!! See below.

Anonymous (November 21, 2003)

I think superdude is not so super. He should change his name to notquiteassuperasithoughtiwas.

Anonymous (November 20, 2003)

i bought their live EP at warped and i like it a lot. this album is good. i wish they would've put the song "sea of plastic" on here...but whatever. interestingly enough, the record store i went to buy this on tuesday didn't have it, but when i went to checked the used section, a promo copy of it was there for $6. so that wins.

Anonymous (November 19, 2003)

that was boba_fett. stupid computer forgetting to save my login. aarg

Anonymous (November 19, 2003)

"...he reminds me of someone I knew..."
really? he reminds me of somebody i know now! except he goes by nacho_fury...

Anonymous (November 19, 2003)

Yeah, a lot of his jokes are corny, but actually quite witty as well.


Anonymous (November 19, 2003)

...he reminds me of someone I knew...

yes, i can tell all this through his seemingly-idiotic-yet-beneath-the-surface-quite-brilliant "how i'd make it better" comments.

boba_fett (November 19, 2003)

i just decided to look at all the recent reviews and im realizing that superdude posts at almost all of them and superdudes posts are all weird. this is so weird. funny guy that superdude.

Anonymous (November 18, 2003)

wait..maxeen and moneen are different bands?

Anonymous (November 18, 2003)

This band has an amazing live show, and i think its really been brought out well in the CD. The boys are all amazing musicians, and I think they really work well together. Yay for this cd.

Anonymous (November 18, 2003)

saw them with yellowcard in santa cruz and bought the record on the spot ! One of the best records of the year and its december bizotch

inagreendase (November 18, 2003)

Sting...U2...Elvis Costello...

Adam, quit bullshitting us, it was released in '83, we get the picture.

KirbyPuckett (November 18, 2003)

(ordered ATHF DVD on amazon.com...sweet)

Going to get that as soon as my bro gets home from school.

- Scott

superdude (November 18, 2003)

This review was good, but here's how I'd make it better:

1. There's only one side to a cd, dummy.

2. Maxeen is a girl's name, and the singer is a boy.

3. The picture is in B&W, which to me means that no one really put much effort into it, who designed that anyway?

4. Is the album is available on cassette?

5. I guess it wouldn't be an "album" then would it?


funkisdead (November 18, 2003)

i have been waiting for this album for mucho tiempo.

Anonymous (November 18, 2003)

i heard a couple of tunes in previous comps and while i wasn't ga-ga over it, it was pretty catchy. i'll give this album a shot.

(ordered ATHF DVD on amazon.com...sweet)

Anonymous (November 18, 2003)

great review,great band, great cd. got it today !!!

Anonymous (November 18, 2003)

Ha oh my god.

Anyway, record's all right...eh
where are all the pit throwdowns?

Anonymous (November 18, 2003)

Comment of the day award, see below.


Anonymous (November 18, 2003)

Maxeen sounds like a tampon brand. This score is for tampons and vaginal bleeding.

Anonymous (November 18, 2003)


my score is for the maxeen/moneen name confusion factor.

Anonymous (November 18, 2003)

Excellent review Adam, you really want to make me go and spend more money today than I'd like.

Aqua Teen Hunger Force comes out on DVD, as well as the Aquabats. Maybe the CKY DVD. Counter Strike on xBox?

Plus I just got my 3.0ghz processor and motherboard in the mail and now I need to go buy new RAM.

Ay yi yi!

- Scott
(Why wasn't my paycheck $600 this week?)

Anonymous (November 18, 2003)


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