NEPA Scene Staff

Scranton emo rockers The Maguas get aggressive on ‘Shapeless’ before hometown show on Oct. 15

Scranton emo rockers The Maguas get aggressive on ‘Shapeless’ before hometown show on Oct. 15
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From a press release:

Before The Maguas head out on their first official fall U.S. tour, the emo-leaning alternative rock outfit has released “Shapeless,” the second single from their upcoming album and their “most aggressive song to date.”

Establishing their roots in Scranton in 2018, the band – Erik Miller (vocals), Matthew Jenkins (lead guitar), Daulton Rissinger (rhythm guitar), Luke Prusinski (bass), and Brandon Ossont (drums) – hit the ground running ever since their inception, releasing their debut EP, “Good Beer,” the following year.

The six-track, self-produced record was a demonstration of the collective’s unique songwriting capabilities, boasting songs written by each member prior to their coalescence. The notable exception, however, was “Funeral.” The closing track brought them back together for an anthemic display of their heavy pop punk power, which soon accentuated performances alongside the likes of Forever Came Calling, Assuming We Survive, and We Were Sharks.

Partnering with producer Nik Bruzzese (Man Overboard, The Wonder Years), The Maguas set to work on their sophomore release in early 2020. “One of Us Is Lying” dropped later that year, quickly garnering significant traction within the music scene and earning them recognition from an array of outlets, including Alternative Press, New Noise Magazine, NEPA Scene, and The Popko Project.

Following in the footsteps of anthem-making emo rockers of the early 2000s such as Jimmy Eat World, Bayside, and My Chemical Romance, The Maguas have embraced a blend of alternative rock, power pop, and pop punk that tugs at your heartstrings. With their emotional songwriting; melodic, moody, lyrically-driven anthems; and theatrical vocals, they have created a breathtaking sound that comes across as novel and invigorating, yet profoundly nostalgic and wistful.

Once again working with Bruzzese, the quintet is setting forth on their third iteration with an anticipated release in 2021. With a solid foundation underfoot, they’re diving deep into dark and vulnerable lyrical thematics to advance their signature emo sound. Following the successful release of their first single of 2021, “Drifter,” on Aug. 27, The Maguas shared their second single, “Shapeless,” today on all major streaming platforms.

“A reflection on the past – aggressive, driving, a push and pull, an emotional conflict between anger and depression that explodes into a chorus that signifies where those feelings come together into words that are more certain, concise, and clear. ‘Shapeless’ is certainly our most aggressive song to date, and rightfully so. It delivers a gut-wrenching story with hard-hitting melodies. We feel it sets the perfect tone for our new, darker emo sound,” the band described in a joint statement.

“This song was an easy choice moving into this record cycle, and we’re all so excited to finally be able to share it with you. Our time with Nik at the Gradwell House [in New Jersey] proved to be a challenging adventure for us, as Nik helped to push our songwriting to new heights throughout the production process. You can truly feel the difference, especially in this song, as the bridge and final chorus hits with a ferocity like none other! We couldn’t be more proud of this new single!”

Like many of their songs, “Shapeless” also has a high-quality music video directed by Alex Zarek with lighting design by Brian Olivo, who they collaborated with on the “Drifter” video.

“Of course, we once again turned to the ever-so-talented Alex Zarek and Brian Olivo to bring this story to life. The natural green light, the cold, dark nature of the video is all so perfectly captured – we are so incredibly thankful again for Alex and Brian’s efforts in creating this video and we are forever grateful for their friendship,” the band continued.

“We are so thankful to be here. We are so thankful for our incredible team and their endless efforts to help take us to the next level. We are so thankful for your support and your love for our band, our story, and our music. This has been an incredible journey – we cannot wait for this chapter to continue to unfold.”

The Maguas have now set their sights on their quickly approaching East Coast tour with pop punk bands Dear Youth from Canada and Outatime from Florida. They’ll kick things off in Boston, Massachusetts on Oct. 14, then play their first hometown show in 19 months at The V-Spot (906 Providence Rd., Scranton) on Friday, Oct. 15, adding Stroudsburg power pop/punk rockers Don’t Panic and NEPA rock band Tori V & The Karma to the lineup.

Doors open at 7 p.m., and the 21+ concert starts at 8 p.m. Tickets are $10 at the door.

From there, The Maguas and their tourmates will visit Washington, D.C.; Amityville and Oneonta in New York; and Akron and Youngstown in Ohio. The band will also perform at The Grape Room in Philadelphia on Saturday, Nov. 6 with The Safest Ledge, Dear Spring, FRND CRCL, and Midfield, so while many people are slowing down as the year comes to an end, these guys are just getting started.

Read more about The Maguas and how they made it through 2020 in NEPA Scene’s full interview with the band here.