So this new Blink 182 album, Neighborhoods: it’s controversial. People are saying “It’s too ‘Angels and Airwaves/Plus 44-ey…we want the old Blink back.” WELL YOU CAN’T HAVE THEM. Go buy Enema of the State from the bargain section of your local record store, (I got it for Christmas two years ago and my year was made) wipe the shit way from the corners of your fat mouths and scrape the radio rock out of your ears for five seconds.
The thing is, as you grow and change as a human being, experience personal tragedy or bliss and life the plates in your own little world begin to shift, the old you becomes the new you second by second, hour by hour, year by year.As the Great Bob Dylan said- the times, they are a'changing. When people said that their previous self titled album was their “coming of age album” they were totally and abysmally wrong. 2003’s (yes, it was actually that long ago…I hadn’t even left high school yet-shock horror GASP) Blink 182 was at best dreary, apart from Feeling This (the song which would define their new sound) and Miss You-the song which proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that pop punk can be emotive. Neighborhoods came as a shock to me, after the band electing to take an indefinite hiatus and Travis Barkers much publicized but thankfully not fatal plane crash. I have to be honest, I’m biased in terms of this album; I went through a whole mess of personal hell last year after listening to Neighborhoods and falling head over heels in love with it. It took me four full months to force myself to listen to the album again, and when I did it made me feel…EVERYTHING, all at once. An album that can bring about a change in one person’s life is an album well made.
Blink 182 has morphed from high school memories into a group of men that can actually change lives. Don’t get me wrong here; listening to Dude Ranch makes me want to steal the nearest kid’s deck and earn me a roasty, I adore their old “we will wear our white socks up to the knees of our cargo shorts if we want to” albums. But this, this is something truly note worthy. The two videos released for the album so far, After Midnight and Up All Night give the world a taste of the old Blink punk beats, perfectly melded with a smooth, airy guitar sound and lyrics that speak to the experiences that make you who you are as a human. Please, forgive the sappiness, but this is an album that makes you feel like if you wanted it enough, and you really tried you could sprout wings and fly. Watch the videos and if you want to lie to yourself and say that they don’t expose a raw side of the band nobody has ever seen before, that they don’t make you want to be a better life form than the one that you are now and that it’s not just DAMN good songwriting, then go ahead…jackass.I look up to these men now, as people who have lived and want to make my life better for it.
Go buy the album, right now. Sell your dog if you must…but this album is golden in the best way. It’s the tides changing in music that has helped define me since I thought it was cool to wear guys shoes and I believe every Blink fan should experience it.