- New Pop Sunday
the song that never ends; it just goes on and on my friend...
that is the impression given off by Sponge on this, their
third album. It is an album of pure pop rock, devoid of substance,
that becomes a monotonous hum behind your ears. And, while
it may be true that there is nothing totally outstanding lately
in the world of pop/alternative rock, Sponge felt it was their
purpose in life to reiterate this notion.
off the album is "My Lackluster Love," a superb example of
a boring song. Choruses of "la la la" fill in the last half
of the song, which help to wake the listener from the daze
the first half of the song had previously set in. Upon awakening,
the listener is greeted with the simple question of "Where
the hell is this song going?"
is: no where, which basically sums up the rest of the album.
abundance of sugar-coated pop mediocrity, the album may have
been better titled New Pop Sundae (much like the cover
art suggests). There is nothing inherently wrong with any
of the songs on the album. Guitar work by Joey Mazzola and
Mike Cross shows off definite musical talent. Dombroski's
vocals are strong, and his voice has the rough edge that has
rung out such hits such as "Molly" and "Wax Ecstatic."
left in disbelief as to what went wrong. The problem lies
in the lack of effort and emotionality put into the album.
The instrumentation and vocals both lack dynamics. Repetition
seems to be key, with the same vocals and riffs coming back
over and over throughout each song. Almost every song is set
to about the same tempo, leading to each blending into the
next. As the album comes to a close, it is difficult to distinguish
where one track ends and the next begins, like a song that
never ends. The result is an album reminiscent of Gin Blossom's
Congratulations I'm Sorry or Candlebox's Lucy;
pure, contrived pop.
fair, there are a few places where the band does shine. "Disconnected"
incorporates horns into the background, bringing them to the
forefront in a powerful close. The album's closer, "Lucky"
does showcase the band's talent, paying special attention
to guitar work. The rest of the album is where Sponge fell
short. It seems as if they decided it was time for a new album,
so they went to the studio, pumped out a collection of ear
candy, and tossed them onto New Pop Sunday. I have
come to expect more quality and insight from this band, perhaps
album #4 will be It's Monday, We're Back to Work.
2.5 out of