Too Much Information
As a band, Maxïmo Park’s output has been frustratingly unpredictable. They’ve never been a bad band (a boast-worthy accomplishment a decade after their first album), but after the post-pop quirk of their first two records, their third fell a bit short. Their fourth clawed back some ground, but Too Much Information does have a tendency to live up to its title.
The problem here is that it sounds like the band doesn’t know what it wants the album to be. Eclectic can work, but there’s little to link the jangly rock of “Give, Get, Take” to the slinky, electro-tinged whisper of “Brain Cells” or ballsy, erratic “My Bloody Mind.”
None of the tracks on Too Much Information are a real stumble that could be to blame. Rather, it feels like too many ideas come from too many directions. I enjoy the layered, loud “I Recognise the Light” just as much as the White Stripes-tinged “Her Name Was Audre.” I just feel like the parts come together to make a rather ill-conceived whole. If the band chopped this material up into two or three EPs or smoothed out the transitions, this output could have been far more successful. As is, it’s a bit much to take in.