“With so many bands going over to the light side, it can be hard to keep up! Come with me as we separate the hits from the hit-and-miss, and discover some brand new gems in the process!”
If 2016 was the year of classic musicians dying, 2017 seems to be the year of classic bands returning and reinventing themselves completely. Some have managed this transition better than others though, so welcome to your one-stop shop for the power-pop you just have to pick up, and the songs you should probably just leave on the shelf!
The Good: Paramore ~ Hard Times
I’ve already made my feelings on this song quite clear, but it doesn’t hurt to mention it again. After such a long hiatus and such prolific success, Paramore could not have had more pressure on them to make their comeback worth it. However, Hayley doesn’t disappoint, and despite being a huge departure from their earlier stuff, Hard Times still manages to feel quintessentially Paramore.
Eighties influence is hard to get right, as it would be so easy to veer into tackiness or kitch, but the trio even manage to make neon and synth seem effortlessly cool. If this single is anything to go by, the album is definitely one to watch out for, and some other bands on this list could learn to take note.
The Bad: All Time Low ~ Life Of The Party
So I’m fully prepared to admit this might just be personal preference. This song isn’t exactly bad, it’s just not memorable, and that’s almost worse than being flat-out terrible. It feels almost filler-like, and considering it’s one of the leading singles, that doesn’t bode well for the rest of the album.
All in all, it’s not the kind of song that would make you flip to another radio station, but it’s not the kind of song to put on repeat or write the lyrics on your school binder either. Especially considering the truly anthemic songs All Time Low have been capable of in the past, the turn into cool urban pop-rock just feels like a regression.
I go into why in the review, but it just seems like a technical and conceptual failure. I really respect what the emo heroes of old do, so I am hoping against hope that the album proves me wrong, but so far my hopes aren’t exactly high.
And that’s all! Do you disagree with me? Are there other songs that should have made the list? Let me know in the comments, and remember that I’m still accepting music submissions over on my Facebook page!