AbsolutePunk.net
   Username
Password
 
Album Review
 
Boys Like Girls - Crazy World Album Cover

Boys Like Girls - Crazy World

Reviewed by
8.0
Boys Like Girls - Crazy World
Record Label: Columbia
Release Date: Dec. 11, 2012
This review was written by an AP.net staff member.
So this is the Hollywood effect, huh?

A half-decade ago, Boys Like Girls (BLG) were a hard-charging Boston quartet that wrote commercially accessible power-pop with tinges of punk and shared bills with the likes of Spitalfield, Punchline and All Time Low. Heck, one publication even referenced them as 2007's version of Fall Out Boy. Yet here we are in the latter stages of 2012 and Boys Like Girls sounds distinctly distant from that framework they once laid. To put it succinctly, they sound more like Train than that of Fall Out Boy.

Whether this has anything to do with Johnson's relocation to California and his time spent with the likes of Miley Cyrus, Victoria Justice and Hot Chelle Rae, to name a few, is anyone's guess, but one thing is for certain, when it comes to writing pop hooks few are better than him, and Crazy World is set out to prove exactly that. Whereas 2009's Love Drunk felt like a band trying too hard, Crazy World finds the quartet swimming in their newfound contentment and reveling in their pop gloss. Any way you slice it, there's no denying frontman Martin Johnson's talent for pop hooks and Crazy World is chock full.

Album opener "First Time," is a dash of synth-inspired bubblegum pop that is a sun-splashed look at nostalgia and is anchored by a bursting chorus. While "First Time," won't do much in the way of provoking thought, it is arguably one of Johnson's best vocal contributions to date and highlights the first of many efforts in which the Massachusetts songwriter sounds definitively more mature and comfortable. The guitar-driven "Life of the Party," is more light-hearted and bubbly than its predecessor and feels like a cheap radio song (see Train, Miley Cyrus, etc) but has a generous hook and the trappings of summer from the very first second.

The title track veers slightly towards Owl City and is another installment of candy-coated pop with an arresting hook. Once again, Johnson's vocals sound absolutely immaculate and one can already see the strides he has made in heightening his craft. Anyone who found favor with "Two is Better Than One," will find plenty of reason to adore the bursting power ballad "Be Your Everything," which is arguably as strong a ballad as any the band has written to date.

For hints of the band's beginnings, the closest thing to that on Crazy World is "Stuck in the Middle," a straightforward and non-glossy cut of pristine pop-rock. And it is here that Crazy World actually finds its footing and delivers some of the disc's best songs. "Cheated," is harmless and boasts a stunning chorus, while "Shoot," feels very much like "First Time," redux. While for many bands this would be a negative, for BLG this actually works well. There's even a slight country tilt to it and from start to finish, "Shoot," is a firecracker.

Not content with just one power ballad, Johnson and Co. leave it all on the table with the piano-based "Leaving California." But all the charms and cheers that "Leaving California," brings are shortly suffocated by the god awful "Take Me Home," and the even weaker "Party Cup." As if cognizant of this, Johnson and Co. close things out with "Hey You," which might easily be the best song BLG has ever written. While it feels a bit premature to use the words transcendent when referencing BLG, "Hey You," might be the exception to that statement.

Over and done in less than 45 minutes, Crazy World is a fine album from a band who seems comfortable with their place in the landscape of contemporary music. Though they are miles removed from the sonic terrain of their humble beginnings, they are surging forward with this new path, and if the amount of potential chart-toppers on Crazy World are any indication, it's a path paved with platinum.

Recommended If You Like Train, Mat Kearney, OneRepublic, Andy Grammer, We the Kings, Owl City, Carly Rae Jepsen


Find Them Here http://www.boyslikegirls.com
 
Displaying posts 1 - 15 of 67
07:13 AM on 12/20/12
#2
SlyZ
Regular Member
Offline
User Info.
No Avatar Selected
This album sucks a big one...
07:19 AM on 12/20/12
#3
RockVocalPower
Ups and Downsizing
Offline
User Info.
RockVocalPower's Avatar
80%? Yikes.
07:24 AM on 12/20/12
#4
Trevor Sostarich
Less Than A Sea
Online
User Info.
Trevor Sostarich's Avatar
I'm a sucker for pop so I'm going to be checking this out.
07:27 AM on 12/20/12
#5
Mikeallover
Regular Member
Offline
User Info.
Mikeallover's Avatar
Why does the beginning of the second song sound like the beginning of a Beyonce song.

No thanks, Jeff.
08:36 AM on 12/20/12
#6
bmiller
Registered User
Offline
User Info.
No Avatar Selected
Alternative Press gave this 1 out of 5 stars, stating that it's a HORRIBLE album. Usually Alt Press inflates ratings of albums for various reasons (industry funding I presume) and Aboslute Punk butchers the hell out of poor records. This 80% rating seems so wrong...
08:40 AM on 12/20/12
#7
EndlessPrisoner
Regular Member
Offline
User Info.
No Avatar Selected
Alternative Press gave this 1 out of 5 stars, stating that it's a HORRIBLE album. Usually Alt Press inflates ratings of albums for various reasons (industry funding I presume) and Aboslute Punk butchers the hell out of poor records. This 80% rating seems so wrong...
Except this isn't the same BLG that Alt Press would love. not too sure that Alt Press would give an adult alternative pop band like the ones in the RIYL any decent grade. Only reason it was even reviewed was because it's BLG.

That being said, I haven't listened yet, but if this is a fairly strong pop record, i'm excited.
08:54 AM on 12/20/12
#8
Joe DeAndrea
Radiosurgery
Offline
User Info.
Joe DeAndrea's Avatar
this album fucking rules, really don't understand the hate for it. shrug.
09:20 AM on 12/20/12
#9
enter return
Offline
User Info.
enter return's Avatar
"You smell that? Smells like Boys Like Girls is back".

Thats all I have to say about that. Awful.
09:27 AM on 12/20/12
RockVocalPower
Ups and Downsizing
Offline
User Info.
RockVocalPower's Avatar
The hooks on this record are fine, I guess. But the whole thing is so sterile; there's not really any genuine emotion at all. It feels a bit soulless.

Also, can "harmless" really be used as a positive adjective in this sense? Don't we deserve more from music than something harmless?
09:58 AM on 12/20/12
FTank
I hate Golden Tate
Offline
User Info.
FTank's Avatar
this album fucking rules, really don't understand the hate for it. shrug.
I agree man
10:19 AM on 12/20/12
brokencyde
I regret making this my username...
Offline
User Info.
brokencyde's Avatar
Good pop record, people just hating because they used to be a little punk.
10:22 AM on 12/20/12
Anthony Sorendino
You are not your idea.
Offline
User Info.
Anthony Sorendino's Avatar
Surprised with this review. I'm going to check out "Hey You" first and then I may give the rest a listen.
10:31 AM on 12/20/12
andrew182182
Registered User
Offline
User Info.
andrew182182's Avatar
"but one thing is for certain, when it comes to writing pop hooks few are better than him"-statements like this make the rest of the review pointless
10:33 AM on 12/20/12
guitarguy211
The Starship Renegade
Offline
User Info.
guitarguy211's Avatar
I like this record a lot. Like a few people have said, it's great and fun pop-rock. Martin has never sounded better, the hooks are some of their best, and the hints of country work well.

Then again, I liked Love Drunk a lot as well.

EDIT: And while it sounds like a song that should be on a High School Musical soundtrack, Red Cup is a blast-I find it impossible to not tap my foot to that song. It's infectiously catchy.

NEWS, MUSIC & MORE
Search News
Release Dates
Exclusives
Best New Music
Articles
CONNECT
Submit News
Forums
Contests
Mobile Version
AP.net Logos
HIDDEN TREASURES
AbsolutePunk Podcast
Free Music
Sports Forum
Technology Forum
Recommendations
INFORMATION
Advertising
Contact Us
Copyright Policy
Terms of Service
Privacy Policy
FOLLOW
Twitter | Facebook | RSS
AP.net Podcast on iTunes
UnderTheGun
Purevolume
Chorus.fm | @jason_tate