Release Date: Jun 10, 2014
Record label: Bridge Nine Records
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Punk-Pop
"Candy Hearts seem to have found the perfect balance for their sound." New Jersey’s Candy Hearts seem to have found the perfect balance for their sound. Enlisting New Found Glory’s Chad Gilbert for production duties, their second album takes the short, sweet catchiness of their twee pop-rock songs and polishes them up. Big time. The downside is they’ve lost a little of their trademark lo-fi fuzz, but singer Mariel Loveland’s lyrics stand out as more succinct and immediate this time around.
Seemingly born out of the same riot grrrl nostalgia that launched a thousand subscriptions to Bust magazine, Candy Hearts' third album, 2014's All the Ways You Let Me Down, is a hooky, punk-influenced record showcasing the personal, diary-esque pop of singer/guitarist Mariel Loveland. Although formed while Loveland was in college in 2009, Candy Hearts make the kind of sweetly rambunctious, thoughtful pop that bands like Letters to Cleo, Blake Babies, Tsunami, and Throwing Muses did in the late '80s and '90s. The band's press describes them as something along the lines of Taylor Swift meets the Breeders, which ends up being a fairly useful comparison.
Like their name suggests, Candy Hearts' brand of pop-punk is sweet and naive. And given the past decade's boy-band-ification of the genre, their unabashed throwback sound is a welcome one. Opening track "I Miss You," quickly lays out their M.O.: crunchy guitars, sing-along choruses and hooks galore. Despite being squarely rooted in the DIY scene of America's Northeast, "pop" isn't something the New York group are afraid of.It's tempting to compare singer Mariel Loveland's vocals with Hayley Williams', but indie-tinged punks Lemuria are a much more apt match.