Sound — 9
Blink 182's earlier albums like chesire cat and dude ranch are fast, loud and raw with songs like carousel, josie or dammit being good examples. However there last offering shows a big difference with the addition of a wider range of intstruments and effects the album feels more artistic and deeper than their others, quiet break downs, whispered vocals and slow melody unlike anything seen on their previous records. The reason behind the change from there three chord style pop-punk maybe influenced by tension between tom and mark after the forming of boxcar racer, the same issues that forced the band to split not long after finishing touring in support of this album, but whatever it is the change is welcome to a maturer audience, but you wouldnt nessecarily play this record at a party without getting some odd looks at the hidden interlude between violence and Stockholm Syndrome. The pain and frustration in tom is recognisible with songs like Stockholm Syndrome sounding deep and emotional and down being a ballad for emo's, be it emo or not in your eyes (not in mine) but whatever you call this drastic change in Blinks style, and whatever you beleive caused it, their new sense of melody and emotion is deep and artistic to an incredible extent.
Lyrics — 8
The lyrics in this album are also a mahoosive change from their old material. Rather than singing about immaturity, trouble with girls and hot girlfriends, Blinks subject matter has moved on to topics such as desperation, confusion and angst with an effect that seperates this album from their others. The lyrics are more emotional and deeper, and are sung in a way that reflects this, painful, soft and sad, melodic, mellow and deep in such a way that truly brings out the emotion in the songs. Mark and Tom work well on this record as in any other yet their syncronisation and varied tones add a layered sense to the vocals, even when sung adjacently.
Overall Impression — 9
'Blink 182' and the bands previous work contrast noticeably and it depends more on your taste of music which style you'll prefer, and personally I find Blinks older albums enjoyable when I'm relaxed, chilled or with friends, yet 'Blink 182' reflects most moods and I find a generally better album. The album definitely boosts a lot of good songs, and my personal favourite are Go, Down, Stockholm syndrome, Violence and Easy Target, the fact that the emotion isnt displayed by the same old whiny screams and emo cries that emotion so often results in is impressive and the bands last album is deeper and more artistic than emo crap. If this album were stolen I'd definitely nick it back and give a smashing to whoever nicked it, inless it was an old woman, then I'd frown, anyway, different, deep, better album.