Back with their second new album since Matt Skiba took the place of Tom DeLonge, Blink 182 have now released their 8th studio album, unimaginatively titled NINE.
We weren’t exactly blown away with the singles we’d listened too leading up to the release. Blame it On My Youth and Darkside both failing to impress. As part of a 15 track album that feels as long as its 42 minutes is, at least one of those tracks can be called a highlight.
Yes, this is a very disappointing album. Not an objectively bad album but rather a bland and dare we say, boring album a lot of the time.
It begins in classic Blink 182 style. Pacey and rocking, The First Time is catchy particularly within the chorus. Unfortunately it’s downhill from here as Happy Days kills the energy with a dour rhythm and Heaven is even more sour sounding. Neither track feels like Blink 182 are really trying here.
It’s the aforementioned Darkside next and it’s a relief just hear something with a little more ‘omph’ to it. The chorus is pretty fire, Skiba’s vocals are top shelf stuff. The same can’t be said for Blame it on My Youth, a very classic Blink 182 track that’s just missing…something.
A short bit of punk rock (less then a minute) comes with Generationally Divide. Followed by Run Away, a very unimpressive listen and the utterly forgettable Black Rain.
At this stage it’s fair to say this Blink 182 is a bit of a different animal. An animal that is a bit longer in the tooth and really doesn’t care about recapturing their most popular days. That Blink 182 doesn’t really exist anymore and that’s fine.
It’s just a shame it hasn’t resulted in really great music.
As a fan, it’s very hard to get excited about the tired gripes of I Really Wish I Hated About You. At least with Pin the Grenade, the band really embrace their pop-rockier side and No Heart to Speak Of is a powerful little number. One of the few that exudes a little more passion, mainly from Skiba.
Ransom is a short one again, the soft melody breaking into a very traditional Blink 182 rhythm. Decent but short lived as On Some Emo S**t has nothing but a bit of a catchy chorus going for it.
Ending with a whimper it seems. Hungover continues the trend of energy sapping tunes before this disappointing release ends in a bland puddle of nothing with Remember to Forget Me.
15 tracks and only a handful that I can really say I liked. That’s not a great return.
Blink 182 – NINE Full Track Listing:
1. The First Time
2. Happy Days
5. Blame it on My Youth
6. Generationally Divide
7. Run Away
8. Black Rain
9. I Really Wish I Hated You
10. Pin the Grenade
11. No Heart to Speak Of
13. On Some Emo S**t
14. Hungover You
15. Remember to Forget Me
Blink 182 - NINE (Columbia Records)