All American Rejects - Move Along
Bill Cummings 02/10/2005
I could make some rather unflattering remarks about the All American Rejects but I'll settle for this: their new album sounds like the pale-faced pop cousin of Green Day. The All American Rejects are the latest pop punk wannabes to be foisted into our consciousness whether they emerged, guitars in hand from their dad's garage or were selected like some kind of big label target market attempt at Busted is besides the point this is inane pop pap, the kind that doesn't leave an impression on the listener ten seconds after its final note.
Kicking off with obvious single “Dirty little Secret” that bounces along in its inane punk pop way, all the melodies are in the right place, the licks are expertly realised but the production has dredged any chance of life or soul this song ever had out of its vacuous skeletal bones. While “Stab My Back” is more like an anaemic Jimmy Eat World rather than the “bitter melodious alt rock” that the press release had led me to expect before pressing the play button.
Elsewhere, countless silly sub-emo lyricisms make this wallpaper pop come off as more amusing than heartfelt, the faint trace of credibility in its skater boy rock styling don't cover up for the fact that this is just boy band pop with a keychain. Take for instance “Move Along”: the lyrics are so trite they are more comparable to the clichés dished up by the Backstreet Boys than any kind of edgy alternative rock band I know. (“These hands are shaking cold/ These Hands are meant to hold/Even when your holding strong/Move along”)
“Dance Inside” is an attempt at a shift in formula: sappy melodies trickle down the strummed guitars, but again the lyrics read more like a bunch of platitudes from a self-help manual (I'll be fine you'll be fine/ Lets dance inside”) While the string laced “Straightjacket Feeling” is a big attempt at the anthemic, it fails under the weight of its bad lyrics and hideous mock sincerity.
Last track “Can't Take It” and it kind of sums up how it feels to listen to this album…Strings bounce, guitars shoot, and the vocals are so cringemakingly “emotional” that it comes off sounding like Savage Garden.
Maybe this record will have a place in the record collections of youngsters who are yet to discover the joys of the Buzzcocks, the Pixies or hell even Jimmy Eat World. Record companies don't fool us by sticking guitars on the necks of boys with good looks, it doesn't make them any more credible if anything its even more obvious what they are: mass market unit shifters producing dull arse over produced pop rock.
The All American Rejects? Rejected.