CD reviews – Good Charlotte: Cardiology


Good Charlotte

There’s an academic paper waiting to be written about the relationship between Good Charlotte and hip-hop/R&B, fashion and music included. I’m not the person to tackle that, but it’s unavoidable when listening to their latest effort, Cardiology.

Prominent examples: “Harlow’s Song (Can’t Dream Without You),” a song that sounds like an unfortunate R&B track from the mid- to late-’90s, and “Like It’s Her Birthday,” the kind of track where the absence of AutoTune is really remarkable.

This isn’t the whole album, though –– a lot of Cardiology is made up of Angels and Airwaves-sounding “inspirational” Good Charlotte, the band that made 2003’s “Hold On.”

Maybe declining album sales has them in a contemplative mood. On “Let the Music Play,” lead singer Joel Madden says, “I’ve never been more alone in here/I turn and face my darkest fear/I just got to keep on keeping on.”  That’s largely what they do – they continue to make pop music in a similar vein to what they’ve been doing for years. But it’s hard to fault the band for sticking to the basic premise of simple pop songs derived from prominent influences, no matter how past their popular prime these guys might be.

James Brotheridge

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