The Moxie Music in Schools program sends the Avonews singles and full albums of new music releases in hopes of coverage. As of recently we were sent something by New York’s colorful, poppy, and semi K-Pop(?), artist MAX, who returns with a new track after releasing the 2020 experimental pop album “Color Vision ”.

“Color Vision” has most likely become a favorite for those who have listened to it. It’s a familiar, even slightly stereotypical pop sound with a blend of alternative, rap and electronic. The genre blend is somewhat out- of -the- box enough for a sound seting MAX up for some pretty positive potential and allowing him to gain some more widespread attention. Even despite the record’s (sometimes obvious) flaws, where some of the songs had sounded like a track AJR would’ve produced. Although, almost directly after signing with Warner Records, this momentum seems to be lost entirely with his new song “Butterflies” featuring Ali Gatie.

“Butterflies” sounds like an attempt to completely alienate those experimental, alternative rock sounds and instead decides to go change MAX’s sound into a boring, radio friendly song. It’s the sound and feel of Maroon 5 towards the second half of their discography. Most likely, prior fans hearing this would be disappointed because of this entire stray from MAX’s original sound. It is possible that Warner Records is behind this as well, leaving the artist with many more restrictions creatively in hopes to make a cheap buck off of this new, rising artist. This possibility also seems to be even further proved when we consider the extra three remixes of “Butterflies” released shortly after the song came out.

It’s honestly not surprising the number of remixes though, due to how bad the instrumental is throughout the original version. The song begins with a very bland, and somewhat awfully mixed, pop sounding guitar. As MAX begins to sing in the first verse we hear some high hats, which are surprisingly mixed worse than the guitar, almost sounding like they had come from an old MP3 player. A feature of which could be interesting if I were under the impression that it was intentional. Next come the sweeping cymbals and simple drums on the chorus that aren’t necessarily interesting at all. Due to the lack of any addition to the instrumental on the chorus, it leaves you feeling empty. This feeling ends up remaining the same throughout the song, resulting in making it feel far longer than it really is and all around bland. The instrumental to “Butterflies” as a whole feels like a direct rip off and mix of the worst Ariana Grande and Justin Bieber songs. Its as though you’ve heard it a million times despite it being only your first listen.

Unfortunately, the lyrics in the song don’t add anything interesting whatsoever. All of the lyrics feel awfully cliche, tacky, and oversimplified. The feature, Ali Gatie, doesn’t do anything good for the song either and actually manages to leave the energy just as low as the verses before it. Although Ali’s verse seems to have the best mixing on the song,  it still sound like it also came from an Ipod Touch much like MAX’s. While it’s not clever or even interesting, “Butterflies” becomes somewhat more pleasing to listen to when you take in the idea that the song was written because of MAX’s recently renewed marriage vows, but it also makes me feel somewhat bad for whoever he seems to be married to.

All in all, this new song “Butterflies” by Max featuring Ali Gatie is painfully bland. Hopefully there’s a deeper, more personal and unique love behind the song, it’s just not there for the listener. 

3 Replies to “Marshall’s Moxie Music Review: Butterflies by MAX (feat. Ali Gatie) has a good heart and a bad sound”

  1. Your review is one of relevance, and off-to-the-side humor, without being directly harsh, you describe the song as stereotypical, which I completely agree with. Though a hit, I don’t foresee a future for MAX, as people like AJR as you said, or even the Jonas Brothers, or that one somewhat hit that I don’t see the appeal in, JAX, create songs like that every day. What was your opinion of “Blueberry Eyes”?

  2. I really like the word choice, when I listen I never think about these things. Very humorous too, very good work.

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