It is rare that I get into a band so late in the process. Considering Maritime included members of The Promise Ring and The Dismemberment Plan, I was perfectly prepared to love this band. A strange thing happened though, Maritime’s 2004 debut Glass Floor barely kept my attention. 2006’s We, The Vehicles, while better, did not register completely with me either. So, when I finally listened to the band’s new album, Heresy And The Hotel Choir, I was not expecting much. However, I was floored at how instantaneous the album hit me.
We have always known that Davey von Bohlen had pop chops but here he exploits it with amazing results. Not since The Promise Ring’s Very Emergency has von Bohlen sounded so confident and assured. Perhaps it has something to do with the exit of bassist Eric Axelson (formerly of The Dismemberment Plan). Now, Maritime is truly von Bohlen’s own venture. To make up for the loss of Axelson’s smooth bass lines, the guitars tend to ring out more powerfully all across Heresy And The Hotel Choir. They even show off a bit of a new wave flair on numerous tracks. The band’s brand of indie pop has matured with age and it finally feels as though Maritime are truly hitting their song-writing stride here. Maritime has mastered the pop anthem and Heresy And The Hotel Choir is chock full of examples.