Second Thoughts – Misfit Maniacs

Second Thoughts is the debut from the band Misfit Maniacs, out of Växjö in Sweden. I first heard Misfit Maniacs on the compilation Ursäkta Röran vol 5 (from Grönpeppar Records) and it was one of the bands that I was most excited about on that record. So it would be fun to see how it holds up over an EP.

And it starts out promising. Opener Showtime has a nice riff that feels grunge-inspired, and the tempo is drawn down a bit which I think is a brave choice in an opening track. Turns out that is not a one-time thing though, most of the tracks land in that mid-tempo zone. Circles follows the same recipe with a distinct mid-tempo riff, but kicks in another gear in the chorus.

Dirty Mouth comes from the compilation and is probably one of the first tracks the band recorded. It has a different energy, less grunge and much more reminiscent of The Donnas and Sahara Hotnights. It’s another kind of energy compared to the more held back and mature-sound of the two first tracks. I like Dirty Mouth as a track though, it has that youthful energy that I tend to like. Decent Into Nothing follows the style of the two opening tracks more and so does Retrospect and the angry closener Fall Off.

Lyrically there’s definitely a lot of riot grrl punk inspiration, and hearing the lyrics I wouldn’t guess that this band is as young as they are. It’s well written and mature throughout.

Sometimes I miss a bit of depth and oumph on the production side which might have helped the band’s musical style hit a little harder, but that’s a minor issue. I also think that the band could have left out the track Dirty Mouth from the EP. Not because it’s a bad track, but because it leers kind of far from the rest of the tracks, and it’s obvious that it’s recorded at a different point in time. The EP would have been a bit more cohesive without it I think.

All in all Second Thoughts from Misfit Maniacs was different than I expected after having heard the first single. More mature, held back in tempo and more rock and grunge than punk. Not necessarily a bad thing though, just not what I thought we would get. Personally it’s not completely down my alley, but the band creates their own mix of riot grrl punk, rock and grunge that feels unique on the Swedish scene right now, and that is something I respect.