MXPX - Let's Rock
Californian pop-punkers MxPx are well into their second decade of existence, having successfully carved out a cult audience without ever really crossing over into the mainstream consciousness. With a three-album deal with A&M ending in 2005, a move to Side One Dummy Records saw them reconnect with other long-time scene outfits such as Mighty Mighty Bosstones, 7Seconds and Flogging Molly and issue the Panic set - considered by many to be a return to form. Let's Rock is a fan-pleasing collection of previously unreleased material and 7"-only tracks that manages to gel together into a pretty coherent whole, but one that is unlikely to draw new listeners into the fold.
MxPx's stock in trade is a radio-friendly pop sound, arguably let down by the fact that it fails to distinguish itself from the gazillion other acts doing pretty much the same thing. In terms of vocal tone, instrumentation and song structure this could be someone like Bowling For Soup and no-one would ever question the fact. There are even a couple of tracks that sound exactly like the kind of plaintive balladry peddled by McFly, which either shows how far the mainstream has come, or how commodified alt. rock currently is.