Blink-182 – California
Legendary 90s pop-punk band Blink-182’s long-awaited new album California feels from the very first play just like classic Blink. And that’s not a bad thing.
After Tom DeLonge’s departure in early 2015, serious uncertainty floated over whether the band would recover from his loss. After their disappointing last album Neighborhoods, fans were begging for a much-needed shakeup. Step in Alkaline Trio’s singer and songwriter Matt Skiba, who, with what appears to be one swift stroke, has completely rejuvenated the spirit that was so clearly absent, returning the band to the energy that their first albums captured for partying teenagers everywhere.
While California might not be groundbreaking by any means, it’s certainly filled with all the singalong pop-punk elements fans know and love. Fast drums by Travis Barker and stunning bass licks keep the energy flowing from start to finish, while stand-out tracks She’s out Of her Mind and summer anthem Bored to Death prove that, despite being in their forties, the guys still have what it takes. It’s a credit to Mark Hoppus that his voice hasn’t aged a day, still as recognisable and powerful as the band’s first album, Chesire Cat, 21 years ago.
While the spirit has certainly returned, it doesn’t quite justify the 16-track length that feels very padded-out by its conclusion. And while the guys have shown they can still cut it, the songs dedicated to their hometowns, California, San Diego and Los Angeles ring a bit pitiable, their cheesy and dated lyrics summoning cringes for the middle-aged men desperately dipping their toes back into the fountain of youth. But you can expect no less from Blink-182, and for a band that was on its back legs, California has put them back on solid ground.
California is released 1st July 2016, for further information or to order the album visit here.
Watch the video for Bored to Death here: