by Pierre Chammas
If 2023 has been anything, it has been the year for your dad’s favorite band. The Rolling Stones, Queens of The Stone Age, The Zombies, Slowdive—now Blink-182. Hits and misses among the list, I could not help but be intrigued by the new Blink-182 release. Now, I have not listened to much of the group’s deeper discography, but I do know the potential this band has to be a gratifying experience. Therefore, we are here.
We start this record with ANTHEM, PT 3. A supposedly grandiose introduction to what may be their final album referring to the title. The track builds up to be a three minute drum solo with mediocre vocals from Tom DeLonge. As much as I enjoy appreciation for the drummers of our bands, it is overdone. Not necessarily a bad track, but it does contribute to the fact that our tracklist can be a rocky road.
DANCE WITH ME is much more coherent and the performance of the instrumentation matches the vocalist much better. Blink 182 is most successful when their songs are catchy and I’d be lying if I said this one didn’t catch on.
But then there is FELL IN LOVE, which would fit seamlessly into a Walmart commercial; that is the furthest from a compliment. These tracks are relatively short and sweet, so it is unacceptable how the majority of each track length is absorbed by the choruses. The problem with this is repetition, which can only really be pulled off if the song is catchy, as I stated.
One flaw that is bound to come when an older band enters the limelight again, is the poor articulation of our lead singer due to aging. For Blink-182, it is not the largest issue in the world, if it were not for the tuning of the vocals on most of the tracks. CHILDHOOD is a song where we can hear this most audibly. He is an impressive singer, but there is clear sound autotune masking the raspiness of his voice which can ruin the authenticity of the track altogether. That being said, CHILDHOOD is actually quite a great cut, ironically being one of the longest tracks on the record. Our outro is much more ceremonious than our intro titled “ANTHEM.”
To enjoy ONE MORE TIME… you must not pay attention to the lyrics. They are nothing special and can be gut-wrenching if you dive into the wrong track. I would rather not list the lyrics of shame for this record, only because no one is listening to this music for intense lyricism. Rock music at its core is not about the poetry behind it, as most music enjoyers view it as a plus. Despite this, horrible lyrics may deter listeners depending on who they are, being me of course. Tom DeLonge and Travis Barker appear in a cadence that sees them full of themselves—that they can just release whatever slop they want and people will listen. The promotion and old album cover prove this somewhat forced rebellious demeanor that they cannot fulfill for the life of them.
Altogether, this record has me leaving it with indifference. Good cuts here and there, but unfortunately much of the potential this project had is swatted by the tail of their own egos. I am feeling a 46 to a 48 out of 100 on this Blink-182 record.