After releasing their 2013 album Secondhand Rapture, and the remixed version (Secondhand ^2) in 2014, New York alternative group MS MR is looking to make noise in 2015. The group released a new song yesterday titled “Painted.”
The song opens with the group’s vocalist, Lizzy Plapinger, repetitively singing, “What did you think would happen.” The lyrics, “When you put me in a heck of a space” and “Pull out a box where a shadow took your place” is then layered on top of the piano-driven opening sequence. The song then leads into the first verse as Lizzy speaks of someone in a bad relationship where that person is not even recognizable to themselves anymore, because they are covering up who they really are. The high-tempo and catchy nature of the song overshadows the darker lyrics delivered by Plapinger. The instrumentation becomes more guitar-driven throughout the track. The lyrics get heavier as the song progresses as well with such lines as, “Burning bridges from the inside-out/ One day I’ll be stronger than my own doubt.” “Painted” is in reference to the masks one can put on so the world around them becomes more positive or tolerable. But eventually, as burning bridges from the inside-out would suggest, the burden of hiding behind this “painted mask” can become too much. After the point of no return has been reached, one’s reality can become torn, and in the wake of getting out the bad situation one has the arduous task of putting their self back together again. The song finishes out strong with the culmination of all the intricacies of the beat, and Lizzy’s vocals coming to a fever pitch. The new release has created a buzz surrounding the MS MR name again. The alternative group most known for their songs “Hurricane” and “Bones” continues to refine their sound, while creating and exploring new avenues to take their music. This sentiment was expressed by the group’s producer Max Hershenow in a statement the group released to Billboard.
“I think we got much better about developing skills we didn’t have on the first record, like ‘Okay, we want to write a dance song right now that’s still rooted in the MS MR aesthetic…[W}e were pleasantly surprised with how big everything feels. Everything feels more upbeat and high-energy.”
The single “Painted” serves as the lead single to their sophomore album that is due out in June. The new MS MR project’s energy level is sure to raise the group’s performances to a new level. The untitled upcoming project will feature a song co-written by Tove Lo, and another by MNDR. The dynamic duo of MS MR is growing musically, and they are taking risks sonically that seem to be paying off. Hopefully MS MR continues pushing themselves forward and seeing results much like their new song “Painted.”