By Joaquin Robles
Artist Myles McCabe, under the stage name Me Rex, released his EP Stegosaurus on Dec. 1, 2016. While only featuring four tracks and totaling 14 minutes in run time, each song has a beautiful melody that deals with tragic topics.
Me Rex is a South London based rock band signed under the label Big Scary Monsters. Frontman Myles McCabe’s love of dinosaurs are what inspired both the album and the band’s name.
Listeners will want to get up, jam out, and dance when they hear the upbeat and poppy sound in every Stegosaurus song. However, if one listens more closely, the meaning of McCabe’s lyrics becomes clear.
Covering topics such as the loss of friends, relationships falling apart and battling addiction, Stegosaurus is an album with hidden messages disguised by its upbeat pop-rock sound. The beauty in the music comes through the blend of both happiness and sadness.
In the opener, “Heart of Garbage,” McCabe sings about slowly losing those close to him and blaming himself for it. Some lyrics include “my heart is made of garbage” as well as his recurring line of “alienate my friends.”
A similar theme follows in song “Rites,” a toxic story of bottling up emotions and self-seclusion. In the song, McCabe talks about running from painful problems and emotions, as well as keeping pain to himself. He says, “keep it from the ones you love.”
As the song progresses, McCabe realizes how horrible and empty he feels with this mindset. “Rites” tells a beautiful redemption story of someone who has taken the first steps to improve themselves in an extremely relatable way.
“Heart of Garbage” and “Rites” listened back to back seem to be a continuous story. In the first song, a fall from happiness is established, with the character losing those close to them. This then forms into self-hatred and depression when they come to believe it is their fault for losing their friends.
However, continuing into “Rites,” the character becomes self aware of how much they hate where they are in their life. Acknowledging the pain they are in sets up the beginning to redeem themselves, which then launches into “Swingset.”
“Swingset” seems to be the only song on the album where the lyrics are not related to depression or self-loathing. In fact, it reads like a love song. McCabe writes, “I love everything that fills your skin” as well as wanting “co-dependent redemption.” The chorus talks about “living the high life” and “having a good time,” showing how the character of this story has become a happier person.
Stegosaurus tells a beautiful story of how we hide pain and self-pity from others. This theme is mirrored in both its lyrics and its instrumentals, with such painful lyrics supported by upbeat rock rhythms. The two parts work together to allow the album to show its true and clever beauty.
Featured image by Big Scary Monsters Recording Company.