Review: Yeah, No, I Know- Macseal

Macseal is a Long Island based emo band formed in 2013, featuring Farmingdale natives Ryan Bartlett, Cole Szilagyi, Justin Canavaciol, Greg Feltman, and Francesca Impastato. On Friday, May 5, the band releases their sophomore EP, Yeah, No, I Know on Table Three Media. 

Like many Long Island bands, Macseal's roots in emo are apparent in strong, emotional lyrics but the band does not stick to the confines of the bummer standards that run in the veins of most Long Island emo. Much like A Great Big Pile of Leaves and The Promise Ring, Macseal's math rock influence sways and dances.  It's easy to get lost and just enjoy the music in the sweeping guitars and bright tonality of "Harry," a song about letting go and loss. Following an ambient bridge that the song does not get lost into, it pulls back together with a chorus of lead vocals and countermelodies reminiscent of Where You Want to Be era Taking Back Sunday, which is a recurring musical motif for the band. 

It’s not surprising how little we talk
and I wonder when our last good conversation was-

"Harry"
 

Another motif the band uses that strongly reflects the style of music they play is the layered vocals- one of singing and one of screaming. Bringing the powerful stories of their lyrics forward in this way is not only what makes many of Macseal's songs well written. In "Twilight Funzone" the contrast of the soothing guitar while the vocals plead "We just want to go home/Please let us go home" leaves the listener wanting more. Many of the verses of the songs are the lyrics pressing against the drums allowing the ear to focus on the lyrics.

The track that stood out the most was "These Things Happen." Musically, it was the most dynamic and the lyrics are bittersweet. The subtle usage of the Fender Rhodes keys in the last chorus adds something nostalgic over sound clips of different voice messages. The "things" that aren't said the lyrics are speaking of make the song feel a bit like a cliffhanger. When it ends, there's a hope for the listener that the record doesn't end there. 

Talk to me
Tell me all the things that you wanted to, but you couldn’t say

"These Things Happen"

Yeah, No, I Know overall what sounds like a lo-fi effort which makes every bit of the musicality more sincere- the ambiance and booming of the drums are not an effort of a recording studio or gear rather a direct reflection of the band's talent. The physical record is available on vinyl (in creamsicle splatter and coke bottle clear!) with a t-shirt bundle option at Table Three Media and can be downloaded at Bandcamp.  

RATING: 4/5

 

Ethos Live Staff Favorite Tracks:

Michelle: "These Things Happen"

Mike: "Harry"

Courtney: "Sandbox"

 

Review by Michelle Turk


The band will be playing a record release show for Yeah, No, I Know on Saturday, June 17 at Amityville Music Hall, presented by Table Three Media. They will be joined by Table Talk, Nervous Dater, Harmony Woods, and more TBA. For more info, click on the flyer below! 
 

  Flyer by Ilana Hope

Flyer by Ilana Hope