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Boys Like Girls - Love Drunk

Boys Like Girls, Love Drunk

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 2 out of 5

AMERICAN pop-punk outfit deliver their sophomore LP Love Drunk almost four years after their debut and, sadly, don’t appear to have grown up much.

In terms of generic pop-rock, this is as formulaic as they come. A collection of upbeat pop-punk records, and some ballads, that attempt to channel the euphoria of the Glee cast without ever coming close to that level of inspiration.

The presence of country singing phenomenon Taylor Swift feels like a blatant attempt to widen their appeal still further but, apart from being one of the album’s better offerings, is really not much better than the majority of what’s on offer: namely, mainstream pandering production values married with cliched lyrics.

Indeed, the songwriting is one of the most shoddy elements of Boys Like Girls make-up. They’re all about the cheese.

Take album title track Love Drunk as an example, complete with ‘gems’ such as: “Hot sweat and blurry eyes, we’re spinnin’ ‘round a roller coaster ride, the world stuck in black and white, you drove me crazy every time we touched, now I’m so broken that I can’t get up, oh girl, you make me such a lush.”

We’re supposed to feel sorrow; instead you’re more likely to raise a snigger at the derivative nature of such juvenile songwriting. The chorus isn’t much better either, being built around the supposedly anthemic offering: “I used to be love drunk, but now I’m hungover.”

Similarly, on the resolutely bland Chemicals Collide, they sing: “I got a couple of addictions but I swear I’m coming clean, I got a new way of thinking, Yeah, you’re bringing out the best of me.”

Musically, the band are pretty tight and know how to carry a melody. On power ballads such as Go they even show range, with frontman Martin Johnson’s vocals drifting into falsetto moments quite well.

Someone Like You isn’t bad, either, as power-pop ballads go… while Taylor Swift’s accomplished vocals and undoubted star presence serves to enliven the country-pop ballad Two Is Better Than One and sounds like a soundtrack moment in waiting.

But even then, the former song contains more bland, irritating songwriting and struggles to avoid being dismissed as teen-lite Bon Jovi.

In the final analysis, this is the sort of non-descript offering that appeals to listeners who have yet to hit musical puberty. There are so many better bands out there.

Download picks: Two Is Better Than One, Go

Track listing:

  1. Heart Heart Heartbreak
  2. Love Drunk
  3. She’s Got A Boyfriend Now
  4. Two Is Better Than One – Boys Like Girls & Taylor Swift
  5. Contagious
  6. Real Thing
  7. Someone Live You
  8. Shot Heard ‘Round The World, The
  9. First One, The
  10. Chemicals Collide
  11. Go