Mest - Broken Down (Album Review)

Mest has kind of had a weird career. They've kind of went down, like their peers Good Charlotte, as a band that hasn't aged well with some listeners. I can remember really enjoying the first couple of Mest albums and seeing them on tour with bands like Blink 182 and Goldfinger which were really cool experiences.

2013 saw the official recorded return of Mest with their album Not What You Expected, their first album in eight years, with only Tony Lavato returning from the "classic" line-up. The album had some interesting songs as well as some odd elements. I'm still not sure what I think about it. It was definitely hit or miss with me. I know I don't enjoy it as much as some of the earlier Mest material.

With the Broken Down acoustic album Lavato picks various Mest songs from the band's discography and strips them down to just his vocals and an acoustic guitar. The album has a charm to it that only nostalgia can offer. Acoustic versions of "Drawing Board" and "Jaded (These Years)" are solid reminders of why I enjoyed Mest in the first place. Lavato’s vocals are as good as they sounded on the classic releases. Some of the songs even sound better in their acoustic form. I might enjoy "Take Me Away (Cried Out To Heaven)" better than it's album counterpart.

The one downfall to this album is that it doesn't feature anything from Not What You Expected. I think some of those tracks would have benefited from the acoustic stripped down sound. One thing I disliked about Not What You Expected was some of the drumming style found on some of the songs. After hearing Lavato on this album I'd really be interested in hearing a stripped down version of Not What You Expected.  

The album as a whole does what I think is its ultimate job. I think it will remind fans of why they liked the band while giving fans some updated versions of classic material. It's a pretty fun listen. It also shows that the songs are still pretty good pop/punk songs. Check it out. It's pure nostalgia and it might remind you of why you enjoyed the band.

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