Sound — 9
I have a very large CD collection, ranging from new bands like Breaking Benjamin, to the classics like Hendrix, Clapton and Zepplin, yet non of the bands in my collection sound like the Goo Goo Dolls. Their unique sound comes from their blend of obscure guitar tunings (John uses many different tunings and rarely uses standard tuning, especially on this album), John's great voice and Robby's driving, throaty voice. They blend all this into uptempo mellodic rock while also using it to great effect on slower songs. There's a great mix of sounds on this album, from the melodic 'Acoustic #3', to the uptempo driving 'Bullet Proof', to the fun and fast 'Slide' and least we forget, the simply magnificent 'Iris'. While I'm not the biggest fan of the songs on which Robby sings, they all add to the blend n mix of the album and I can appreciate their value to the album and their quality. On the whole this album, and of course this band, have a unique sound which is driven by emotion and experience, they are very open to their listeners, I like that about them.
Lyrics — 10
While they have a brilliant sound, it is in their lyrics, specifically John Rzeznik's, where this album and band truely excel. John writes from experience, from observation and most importantly, from the heart. As a lyricist myself I always listen to the lyrics on albums and there are plenty of songs on this album that everytime I hear them I think 'I wish I'd written that song!' John deals with a range of subject matter, 'Slide' is about love and passion and wanting to just run away with someone and be only the two of you, something that most people can relate to. 'Broadway' is about his Father's alcoholism, 'Acousic #3' is about is about feeling small, alone and trapped, again something that everyone feels at some point in there life (this song also contains my personal favourite line: 'The least they ever gave you, is the most you ever knew'). 'Black Balloon' is about teenage-pregnancy and 'All Eyes On Me' is about pressure and expectation. So as you can see, John deals with everything, even things that most people refuse to acknowlege, put simply he is a Genius, a magnificent lyricist who deserves a huge amount of credit for his heart-felt song writing. Of course all of this cannot be said without mentioning the song, which in my opinion, is the greatest of all time 'Iris'. It's hard to describe this song, it's pure genius, it's moving and the lyrics are simply magic, straight from the soul. The song is about love and John has somehow managed to find the words that perfectly explain to be love and to have loss. When I'm lost or feel overwhelmed or just simply can't find the right words. I listen to this song.
Overall Impression — 10
This is one of, if not, the greatest album ever made and is probably my all-time favourite. It shows a great passion for music and is a truely inpirational and moving music masterpiece! It is their best album to date, although their albums before and since are of a very high stndard too, this album is just too good to compare them to! 'Iris' is, as I've said, the greatest song ever written and alone makes the album a classic, but when combined with the other great songs on this album, really pushes it into the upper reaches of music genius. I love this album, don't even think about taking it away from me! But if someone did, I'd replace it on that very day! This is a must for fans of all music, a creation of pure musical brilliance!