Simple Math is the new album from American indie-rock band Manchester Orchestra and we have a stream of the album for your listening pleasure.
Simple Math in the third album from the Atlanta, Georgia based band and dwells on front man Andy Hull’s experiences in putting his life back together. “It’s the reaction to my marital, physical, and mental failures. But for the first time, I’m not blaming anyone but myself,” says hull.
Each track dealing with a different aspect of his life such as the opening track Deer sets a simmering and descriptive starting-point to Hull’s journey. It begins with an honest confession, carefully full of vivid detail. The lyric I’d go out in public if nobody ever asked perfectly sums up just how hard it is to lead a normal life once your pain becomes public.
This is followed by the hard driving and rich Mighty, which Hull describes as sounding “like the Apocalypse. It’s my darkest hour, in a sense.” The third track, Pensacola, is a meditation on where the band has taken him and where he thinks he may be heading. “In this song, the innocence is leaving,” says Hull. The raw and masterful April Fool is next, an exquisite dynamite blast of big guitars, giant drums and soaring harmonies that, ironically, “was my first attempt at a love song on this album.” This moves directly into Pale Black Eye, a power-chord powder keg that builds from controlled discourse (“The song is sung three ways: Me to God, me to my wife, and God to me”) to earthshaking confession, a rock and roll bloodletting. Bite your veins/ bleed your pain/ into me.
Virgin appears next, a four and a half minute rock opera that looks back at the road that led the band to the present. “It’s a tri-fold story that parallels three ‘firsts’ for me,” explains Hull. “The loss of my virginity, the potential loss of relationship, and the realization that our band has and will change after our first album. To all of these issues, the same lyric applies: It’s never gonna be the same.” It’s here that the heartfelt and elegant title track (and first single) Simple Math arrives. “This is a song about an affair, non-existent but unrealized. I cannot hide from the truth. It finds me. The chorus is myself questioning God. Had I convinced myself, my family, my band that something is real when it isn’t?” Leave It Alone next slips quietly (at first) into the aftermath, a beautiful yet angry recounting of a three-hour argument brought on by what five years on the road can do to someone. “I love the last line, If we end up alone, a plague on my head and a curse on our home. This song is my realization that there’s a chance no one will ever love me like my wife Amy.”
Second from last is Apprehension, a sobering, lyrical tour through the guilt, the blame, the questioning of who’s at fault. “Not only is the song about Amy and me, it’s also about several friends and family members going through a miscarriage. It represents that even after all has been mended in one heavy situation, life will continue to give you trials that require immense trust and faith in someone or something.” And ending it all is Leaky Brakes, which tiptoes quietly but confidently in to lead us back into the present. “The final breath is essentially to admit to everything I’ve ever done wrong,” says Hull of this final track. “The lyrics are so evolved compared to where we began. It’s all here and ready to be confronted. It’s up to me now.”
Manchester Orchestra’s new album Simple Math is out on the 10th of May