Martha: Please Don’t Take Me Back [Album Review]

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Please Don’t Take Me Back
Specialist Subject/Dirtnap Records [2022]

Now on their fourth album, Durham, England’s Martha has perfected their indie pop punk formula as they have released one of their most engaging records to date. Please Don’t Take Me Back has an early DIY sound with loud crashing guitars and drums while the group comes together for a multitude of memorable harmonies that cement the choruses in your head. This offers up a 36-minute foot-tapping experience that only gets better with more spins.

The pandemic has changed everyone and Martha is no different. On their 2019 album, Love Keeps Kicking, the band was railing against a world that was cracking. Now, Martha are putting the pieces of that world back together and finding a way to navigate through all the new tripwires. The combination vocals of J.C. Cairns and Naomi Griffin takes a new level of comfort on this record as they really do support each other nicely throughout the entire album. Griffen once again takes lead on several tracks as well which gives Martha diversity and a standout identity.

What makes Please Don’t Take Me Back a great listen is that every song has the ability to catch your ear. From the big guitar driven “Hope Gets Harder” to the layered harmonies on “FLAG//BURNER” to the large sing along chorus in “Baby, Does Your Heart Sink,” Martha deliver energy, confidence and a seemingly effortless indie pop punk. The band’s now 12-year experience brings the entire record together as Martha has turned out one of the better pop punk records released this year!

“Hope Gets Harder” / “Baby, Does Your Heart Sink” / “Beat, Perpetual”

The Marked Men / Superchunk / The Beths

Blisters In The Pit Of My Heart (2016)

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Christopher Anthony
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