Eric Schackne

REVIEW: Mixtapes – ‘How To Throw A Successful Party’

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Like, we’re all at a party.  And we’re having a blast, okay?  And you want your friends to play you some of their new music.  So, your best bud grabs a guitar and we all gather by the piano.  Convenient right?  Well, this is the feeling I get from Mixtapes’ latest slice of life, How To Throw A Successful Party.  Track titles and song formats display some interesting artistic choices by these Cincinatti natives, and most songs on the record are only one to two minutes long.

Waiting until the end of the album to break out an electric guitar, most of these tunes are acoustic with male and female vocal contributions.  While there’s some emo and pop punk influence in their progressions and melodies, they achieve this indie, Arcade Fire ensemble sound from time to time.

They title the tracks interestingly too, starting with “10 A.M. (how to successfully start the day)” and ending with “5 A.M. (how to successfully throw a party).”  The final title track is one of the most commercial of the album as well.  There’s an inherent adolescent emotion behind these songs, and I think it’s the specifics in the lyrics that lead it toward that feeling.  Specifically in “Noon (protest song),” the declaration to remain “forever young” keeps the mood anthemic and empowering.  A small town feel hovers over their harmonies and melodic sound.  If you’re a fan of any acoustic band that’s ever played Warped Tour, you’d be into Mixtapes.

If you’re looking for an easy record to play while you’re hanging out with friends, you should pick up Mixtapes’ latest release How To Throw A Successful Party…and your party will sure be a success.  Do you see what I did there?

Tracklisting:
1. 10 AM (How to Successfully Start the Day)
2. Noon (Protest Song)
3. 2 PM (How to End Something Good)
4. 4 PM (Stupid Famous Quotes)
5. 6 PM (How to Enjoy the Scenic Route)
6. 8 PM (The Apple Barn)
7. 10 PM (Safe)
8. Midnight (From the Red to the Blue)
9. 5 AM (How to Successfully Throw a Party)

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