The Tragedy of Mariam - The Tragedy of Mariam EP
Release Date: December 2009
Record Label: Unsigned
The Tragedy of Mariam are a hardcore/pop punk band from Windsor, Canada. The Tragedy of Mariam EP is their second release, following their debut full-length, Smile. Ur Watched. The group pride themselves on their do-it-yourself ethic.
How Is It?
It shows promise. The EP is only three songs long, but crunchy guitars and vocals that are somewhat reminiscent of a less nasally Jordan Pundik give fans of pop punk a lot to listen to. Without a doubt, the EP is highlighted by its middle song, "So Much for 110%". The New Found Glory similarities are present here, but The Tragedy of Mariam make a point to bring more hardcore influences into the fray than other pop punk bands. The guitar riff that introduces the song and the lead guitar that follows it make this song a potential classic in the genre, sort of like a less spectacular "Memorial Field". The chorus, with its ground-stomping guitar work, definitely lends itself to being shouted over the speakers, and the song's only blunder lies in the bridge. The Tragedy of Mariam maybe try a little too hard with the hardcore/metal influences, and make the bridge a screamo version of the chorus, and it feels forced and unwelcome. "Bright Lights and New Life" and "Sink or Swim" follow similar patterns to "So Much for 110%", but are less ear-friendly from first listen. "Sink or Swim" has no screaming and shows the structure that the band might want to expand upon for future recordings. They're still good songs, though, and for a second release, this EP is some quality stuff.
The Tragedy of Mariam could be a good pop punk band one day, but if they keep forcing their harder influences, they'll have to abandon the poppy choruses, which are the best parts of this EP. In my opinion, the hardcore influences in this group should be let out in the guitar work, not the vocals. The vocals are extremely friendly and making the guitars even heavier might increase the band's appeal to some. It seems to me as though The Tragedy of Mariam need to realize what direction they want to go with their sound before they record another effort. For the time being, though, this EP gives listeners plenty to think about.