Album Review: Blink-182 ‘Neighborhoods’
Music Trajectory rating: 3.5/5
Back from hiatus and still relevant, Blink-182 continue where they left off
Blink-182 is a band that I have followed since the early days with releases like Cheshire Cat and Dude Ranch. Each album they have released I have been happy to purchase and I can honestly say I have enjoyed each album, particularly the last album Blink-182 that they released in 2003. This was an album that saw Blink-182 push the boundaries of their music, infusing experimental elements into their usual pop punk formula. This resulted in a more mature sound. Then Tom DeLonge left the band in 2005, sending the band into hiatus. Tom went on to form the band Angels & Airwaves and Mark and Travis went on to form +44 and other side projects. The band reunited in February 2009 and Neighborhoods was released on September 27, 2011.
Expecting a solid release, I pre-ordered the album on iTunes to score four bonus tracks. I still wonder why they weren’t just included in the album. Upon the first few listens, I wasn’t crazy about the album. But like most Blink-182 albums of the past, this album grew on me. I now think the album is very solid and if you are a Blink-182 fan to any degree, I recommend picking up the album. I also suggest watching this nme.com interview with Mark before doing so; it will give some good perspective on the new album. The album’s sound can best be described as a culmination of the band’s side projects and continuing with the experimentation and sound of their last release Blink-182.
Moving on to what works and what is lacking…
I think the track listing of the album is perfect. The album flows very well; starting out strong with some of the better tracks on the album and then moving through a good mix of faster and slower songs, including the well-composed “Heart’s All Gone (Interlude)”. I also liked some of the different riffs throughout the album which are very different from anything Blink-182 has ever written.
What is lacking
The album is missing a great song. Like past Blink-182 albums, there is usually at least one song that fans new and old embrace. I don’t think Neighborhoods has that song, although I think first single “Up All Night” is underrated, judging by the response I see and hear.