You guys ready? I sure am. Let's Save Rock And Roll ladies and gentlemen.
First of all, I'm not going to comment, write my thoughts and pin them to every single song, but I will point out my favourites and the others that needs a little improvement. Secondly, don't take this review as seriously as I could be biased towards Fall Out Boy, but that doesn't make this review a meaningless one. I will review the album on it's own count, but a tight lid will still be closed on the fact that it is still a Fall Out Boy record.
This album had been in production over the past year and a half, hidden away in secret from paparazzi and fans, and came out releasing a solid statement with touring dates and a new single. Consider Fall Out Boy an ever-evolving band, with their album sounds changing almost every time. Infinity On High was rock-steady, one of my favourite albums while Folie à Deux was instantly encapsulating, delivering upbeat moments and expressions that lasts until this very day. Save Rock And Roll's best moments comes in the form of layers, textures, sounds and the always superb Pete Wentz's lyrics.
With Light Em' Up as the first single, Fall Out Boy made the right choice. Not only does the song light up an entire brigade of tunes, but it's resonance and above-par guitar riffs that instantly rips apart the track to shreds is one of the most standout tracks of the album, making it one of the harder ones to skip by off the album. It is also certified gold. Not to forget, so is The Phoenix, an irresistible combination of rock and pop and grunge, and maybe even mind tricking you into thinking that Fall Out Boy has changed. The truth is, they have.
Their days of pop punk and pop rock are almost entirely over, unless Save Rock And Roll's tunes do give two hoots. A number of songs on the album are more traditional to the previous albums, such as Rat A Tat and Young Volcanoes. The Courtney Love collaboration was an utter mess from the get-go, never a favourite to her verses (or intro). Yes, it was not the only exception on the album, and I'll tell you why later on. Thank goodness though, Pete saves the day along with Patrick, delivering one of the most memorable chorus from their early days, and writing which is not just straight punk, but also reasonable to a large extent. Young Volcanoes insisted on an acoustic touch, and with such effect it caused that the song was memorable and hip-heavy, including a drum and clap sound that closed the track. Not to mention the word 'asshole', which seems hard to come from one as bright as Pete. Still, it is a must listen.
However, as good things roll over, there are also songs which I felt didn't really groove me into setting up myself for it. One of those would be Miss Missing You. Occasionally it would be interesting and emotional at times, but rather, it was not poetic enough for me to really stick to it and makes it harder for me to listen for even a minute or so. It is a great effort nonetheless, and it is still reminiscent of their past albums. The Mighty Fall was equally disturbing. Despite the hardcore electronic guitars from Joe, the talented guitarist could not set himself up for what was to happen; Big Sean. Arguable better than Courtney Love's verses, still, his delivery and vocals sounded apprehended and tired, especially on a track with such enthusiasm and power that was built before, just crumbles into pieces. So with four featured artists on the track, I've mentioned the two that are not on my favourites list off this album, so let's talk about another one.
Foxes features on Just One Yesterday, with Adele's vocals almost slipping through the microphone through Patrick's lips on the first verse. That doesn't mean much, as Foxes's vocals and contribution certainly is better than what the former two have to offer, spreading her voice on the bridge with 'if I spilled my guts; the world would never look at you the same way'. Another standout track for me would be Death Valley and Where Did The Party Go. Especially the latter, sounding eerily like Dance, Dance, except this time, it's gone horribly groovy. The lyrics fun and advocating, along with the 'nah nah nah's that pumps up the song. Oh, and did I mention about Pete's bassline that was jaw-dropping as hell?
With all things said and done, we come to the final grand closure, entitled Save Rock And Roll featuring Elton John. And personally, it is the best track on the album easily. Fantastic chorus, emotional vocals, surprising lyrics, effective layering and mastering and Elton John's powerful, engaging singing just fit up for the perfect end of this album. I couldn't say more. This album served it's purpose - a highlight on a summer day and rock and roll, which seems ironic despite all the touches to this album. People could laugh at Fall Out Boy when their trying to Save Rock And Roll, but when it comes down to the grandiose tracks that makes up this album, they are insanely back. Welcome home boys.
10/10: There are some awful flaws, no doubt, but what the album lacks for, it brings up through on the other side. Fantastic layers, fantastic vocals, astounding tracks, reminiscing of the old albums, and a change of sound. This is Fall Out Boy at their best, and this is the 2013 Fall Out Boy. Patrick's slimmer, Pete's brighter, Joe's put on his afro and Andy's more matured. Save Rock And Roll is your global restoring attitude, and the one that serves where it's due. Well done, well done.
Paramore releases Paramore. Yeah!
Listen to the new single Still Into You right here.
So pop rock band Paramore with the famous front female singer, Hayley Williams, just got together and debuted their new self-titled album a few days ago, and their first single, Now, was met with average to almost negative reception. I couldn't blame them; bands need a little fixation and in these generations, people are unable to cope with the rising tide of bands departing from their sounds and crossing above and beyond to figure out what their next lyrical venture should be like.
And what should fans expect from the new album? A change of taste, perhaps. Almost 9 years of their career, and sticking to their music of moody punk rock and pop has not been able to succeed ever since their previous studio album, Brand New Eyes. A follower since than, Paramore's previous hits are legendary and if not, special. Decode, Crushcrushcrush, Misery Business, Brick By Boring Brick and Playing God are the most notable songs off Paramore's set-list if they are to ever come to town.
Not to forget the departure of the Farro brothers, with Josh claiming that the band was "a manufactured product of a major-label," also stating many negatives of Hayley Williams as the solo project of Paramore, the rest of the band "riding on the coattails of her dream". While this united many Paramore fans, maybe that was why that changed their sound. Over the course, Paramore released Monster, which evolved and ended speculation, even reigniting their career and defined themselves once again.
So how did Still Into You did? Well, to say that this song is punk pop is accurate to a certain degree. In fact, if this is how Paramore wants to sound for their future albums and change, then they might mistake and hurt some hardcore fans, but only for a temporary while. After listening to this single, there is still some hope and glitter that Hayley and the others that can count on.
So the song starts off with a deep drums and accurate guitar riffs, making it sound Paramore-ish-turned-pop sound with the lyrics beautifully written to showcase the affection of a couple. As expected, the chorus bursts into a butterfly, advocating an immensely turned route and the pop sound continues to grow and has no intention of stopping anytime soon. What makes this an adventurous record is the part where the bridge instantly caves in, dominating the song and realising that Paramore has changed, along with their new album.
And after all this time, I'm still into you. I should be over all the butterflies (but I'm into you - I'm into you); And baby even on our worst nights, I'm into you (I'm into you). - Hayley Williams
Paramore, the spunky punk band decides to go with the defensive single off their album, but right choice indeed. If they needed a song that would last the charts, a relatively close pop song with beats that are actually worth it, this would be the ideal choice. Now was never a Billboard success from the start, and we could see now,
ORIGINALITY: 9/10 - Paramore delivers another heart-pounding song made on true heart and emotions. This is rare and raw.
SOUND: 8/10 - A change of sound was necessary, the single proved it and it seemed inevitable.
LYRICS: 7/10 - Not as good as their previous lyrical impressive works, Paramore still holds up above their signature tunes, but this has been average if it were to be compared.
OVERALL: 24/30 - Still Into You might be a departure and might make you lose focus of Paramore again, but rest assured this is still a radio hit and pop soundingly explosive. I will be playing it for days, and I believe you will do too.
12 years... what an adventure Killjoys. What an adventure. Take me back, please.
Know more about this awesome band here and read up on their Wikipedia.
To me, I had to declare that I had only know about the band back when it was 2010, the day they released Danger Days - and guess what? The incredible album ended up on my top favourites list of the year and it made me listen to their past hits. What happened there, was history. Who could ever forget this awesome band, which everyone has almost heard for at least once.
A SHORT HISTORY ABOUT THEM:
My Chemical Romance (MCR), was an alternative rock band that was formed back in 2001. The band consisted of bassist Mikey Way, guitarists Ray Toro and Frank lero, and the unforgettable lead vocalist Gerard Way. Their fourth studio album, Danger Days: The True Lives Of The Fabulous Killjoys was their final album, and it was released back in 2010. MCR has gained positive reviews of their career, and despite their success, they announced their break-up on 22nd March, 2013.
MY FAVOURITE SONG FROM THEM:
Teenagers: This song kills every other ones, at least for me. Though not a very memorable song, MCR produces what I can possibly say, the best rendition of particularly radioactive songs and Teenagers however, was not actually (to me) almost never meant for radio. With lyrics containing absurd profanity and great tuning to instruments, this song is hell of a blast. My Chemical Romance knows their audience - they plays it for their audience, and they control the tastes of their sound. To me, that is what you would call an amazing band. From the start, Teenagers doesn't leave your ears and takes almost three times for you to get all the lyrics right. For that, MCR, well done. Love this song as always man!
THEIR MOST SUCCESSFUL SINGLE:
Welcome to the Black Parade: This is the song that made me fall in love with them - instantly. Great vocals from Gerard, one of the best in his career and the amazing backdrop of guitars and drums that lives up to this song as the defining moment for My Chemical Romance. Though this, as some might call it, 'emo trashbag song', is a false lie and in fact, is even ten times better than more alternate rock bands out there in the music industry. No other band, I repeat, no other band can consolidate their position and learn from their mistakes than My Chemical Romance. Daring, proven and one of the greatest bands of all-time, they have my greatest respects and I will still listen to them until today.
MY CHEMICAL ROMANCE TO ME:
To me, MCR is more than just a rock band or any other sort. They take material and carve it with whatever they have, transforming from a little slumber to a giant enormous wave. The best learns from them, and though I don't feel as sad as I should, they have still been a part of my life wherever I've been. They have helped me go through some nasty times and for that, MCR will always be there whenever. Thousands of fans mourn your departure, but Killjoys never die.
LISTEN TO MCR (MY PICKS):
Na Na Na, Famous Last Words, Helena, SING, I Don't Love You, Planetary (GO!) and The Kids From Yesterday.
KILLJOYS NEVER DIE.
OneRepublic drops Native. What better way to celebrate?
Click here for the music video of If I Lose Myself.
The self-dubbed 'no respecter of genre' band OneRepublic has just released their new album, Native, a few days ago. The album, which was actually supposed to be dropped last November 2012, was eventually delayed and this caused a further release date to March 2013. However, this does not stop hardcore and very influential fans to stop loving their favourite band.
The follow-up single of the highly commercially successful hit, Feel Again, this further proves to be that with everything that has come before, OneRepublic strikes back every single time.
Back in 2009, All The Right Moves and Secrets carried on the heavyweight chart success, but Good Life eventually toppled that and even ended up peaking at number 8 on the Billboard Hot 100. This time however, things have become rather dim, with Feel Again their 2nd official single with a worse chart position than their other singles, peaking at number 36. If I Lose Myself has just dropped out, but still managed to reach 74. Let us all not forget the unforgetting hit with Timbaland, Apologize which managed to reach number 2. The highest peak was achievable despite the promotions, it just seemed not enough to push it too far.
How did Native do? Too me, it was a hybrid of contemporary pop and simple rock, coupled with excessive genius lyric-writing eventually churns out an impressive yet steady album that proves that OneRepublic is still one of the best in the business. No matter what, they can handle any genre, proving speculations of anything else doubtful and keeps Ryan Tedder's hits flow through everyone's hearts.
Back to the song, If I Lose Myself was a rather drop of vibe to their previous hit Feel Again. The predecessor, focusing much more on the pop sound than to If I Lose Myself's real sounding vibe, they are two completely different songs and are both equally great. However, flaws can be heard and surfaced everytime a quick pause and reflection is done. For one, If I Lose Myself started off slow, the pacing irregular and while this is so, most of OneRepublic's songs focuses on the fact that it is a heavy-drummed and solid extensive vocals from Ryan that makes the song sound unique and genuine. This could also be the reasons for the song's slow departure to even hit 50 on the Billboard charts, even on Airplay.
If I lose myself tonight, it will be by your side. If I lose myself tonight, it will be you and I. - Ryan Tedder
However, this is a solid tradition for OneRepublic. If I could, I would definitely rank them higher based upon old scores mashed with the new ones. (Probably even higher than Maroon 5, who are in a desperate need of fixation of tune and lyrics). Though that said, If I Lose Myself had one of the best bridges to a song and the chorus, eventually the end-chorus sound together with the chants. This makes for fine listening on any desperate day and it lifts your spirits. Thought you can't compare old hits, Ryan needs a big tad of improvement and has done it in the form of an album.
ORIGINALITY: 9/10 - OneRepublic's inspiration and motivation keeps hard work going strong. If I Lose Myself is an original genuine hit.
SOUND: 9/10 - The best parts are the lyrics and the bridge. What next? Ryan's collective lyrics.
LYRICS: 8/10 - I would rate it higher, but we know Ryan's songwriting collection is higher than that, even clocking at 40 top 10 singles on the Billboard through songwriting work with other artists. This is very impressive.
OVERALL: 26/30 - Removing all the necessary small pointers in my review, If I Lose Myself is an astounding, slow-paced and bass pounding hit. Ryan's voice sings true to the lyrics and the sound is magnificently built. I'll be playing it for days, and see you soon.
Benny Ong: Just your regular guy who likes soccer more than most people, and also a little downtime is pretty nice.