Review - Blink 182 – Neighborhoods
It has been eight years since pop-punk pioneers Blink 182 have put out a full-length LP, but it seems that their fans have lost none of their love. This is easily one of the most anticipated albums of the year (in fact, several magazines had it on their list of “Most Anticipated Albums of 2010” when it was still supposed to come out then, and once it was pushed back, they simply said that it was now one of the most anticipated albums of 2011), and though it seems this album will be lacking a real radio single, a la “What’s My Age Again”, that doesn’t mean the cd won’t be a success.
The boys announced at the 2009 Grammys that they would be reuniting and making a new album (I thought it felt a bit stupid, because they had only been broken up for a few years – more of a hiatus than anything). I am glad that they then spent almost two years making said album, because anything less than that might have felt a bit rushed.
Since their last effort, each member of the group has gone on to do other things – usually several other things (Angels & Airwaves, several mixtapes with DJ AM, a solo album by Travis Barker, +44, etc. etc.), so they were able to get a lot out of their system and try new things.
Neighborhoods – the group’s sixth studio effort shows us three things about Blink 182. First, it confirms that no matter how old they may get or what else they are into, Blink 182 has always been and will always be a fantastic pop punk band. No if, ands or buts about it, Blink helped start the genre, they helped fuel the genre, and now, when it seems as if the world has forgotten about pop punk, they are just going to continue on.
Second, that a lot has happened in their lives in the past few years. They lost two very good friends of theirs, had divorces, children, and spent several years apart from their band mates in bitter fighting. Neighborhoods shows all of this, and is surprisingly lacking in light, airy, mean-nothing pop songs. The album sounds a lot more “Down” than “The Rock Show”…if you’re familiar with their back catalogue of singles.
The third thing that I learned from Neighborhoods – which I was a bit more surprised to learn about them – is that they are not afraid to try new things. Many bands in their world grab a hold of the style that made them popular and never let go. This album is much darker, much more serious, and open in sharing the emotions of its writers and composers.
Neighborhoods may really come as a shock to many die-hard fans, but I think they’re gonna like it.
Listen to: “Wishing Well”, “Kaleidoscope”, “Fighting The Gravity”, and “Ghost on the Dancefloor”.