Schatzi – Split EP

Split EP

For the record, splits are the coolest. No, not the splits you do in gymnastics (those are painful), but split releases. Some genius even put out a Blondie/Pat Benatar split. Seriously, “Heart of Glass” right next to “Heartbreaker” equals paaaarty! It is very important to make sure your split has bands that make sense together. You wouldn’t put out a Staind/Michelle Branch split, because it simply would not flow…actually, it might. “I’m on the outside / I’m looking in” next to “Turn it inside out so I can see / the part of you that’s drifting over me.” Yes.
Motion City Soundtrack/Schatzi also go together like peanut butter ‘n’ jelly. MCS provides the poppier moments with songs “Throw down,” “Capital H,” and “Back to the Beat.” Schatzi brings the edgier rock with the songs “Coreopsis” and “Arithmetic’s Collapse.” And then… “Any way You Want It,” a Journey cover. Not many bands could pull this of with enough aplomb to make up for the fact that they are covering a Journey song, but Schatzi succeeds. Motion City Soundtrack/Schatzi can now be added to the list of good split releases, right up there with the Naked Eyes/Spandau Ballet. With three songs each, the album manages to have enough to diversity to warrant numerous listens.
MCS and Schatzi both share a similar aesthetic; I would put their music somewhere in the almost radio friendly pre-J.E.W. takeover category. With Weezer-like choruses (and keys), MCS also manages to put a foot in ever-popular “alternative” land. I use the term “alternative” because of an experience I recently had while driving down I-5: MCS and Schatzi label-mates the All-American “Swing Swing” Rejects came on the radio (yes, I listen to the radio), and I found myself singing along. Just because it is on a corporate radio station doesn’t mean it’s bad. There is a whole new crop of bands that are fit for radio, but a head above the New Found Glory’s and Good Charlottes saturating “alternative” rock stations. And this is where I place MCS and Schatzi. Radio-friendly, but with enough chops (and fun) to appeal to jaded indie fans.