Cardiology review by Good Charlotte

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  • Released: Oct 27, 2010
  • Sound: 7
  • Lyrics: 6
  • Overall Impression: 7
  • Reviewer's score: 6.7 Neat
  • Users' score: 6.1 (238 votes)
Good Charlotte: Cardiology
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Sound — 7
It's hard to believe the term "pop punk" was once associated with artists like Simple Plan and Good Charlotte. The early periods of the 2000s' featured television sets dominated by artists like these but when compared to today's definition of the genre, it's blatantly weird to imagine offspring like Metro Station and Forever The Sickest Kids stemmed from songs like "The Anthem". The reason why Good Charlotte's latest release isn't injected with pathetic wails about girls with model looks is because Cardiology borrows genes from the Maryland act's debut releases.

Instead of popping eyes with a venture into dark, menacing tones or indie wonderland, the group keep it simple, tying the chemistry of the Madden brothers around simple pop riffs and hooks. There are advances into sweet sixteen birthday-party anthems ("Like It's Her Birthday", "Sex On The Radio"), but they, like most of the album, fall in line with The Young And The Hopeless, coming mature and not too "synthy". Even the serious attempts at ballads placed in the middle of the fifth studio release refrain from being too lovesick. "Harlow's Song (Can't Dream Without You)" and it's gloomy sincerity along with the alt pop track "Standing Ovation" impeccably set up the rest of the album that plays with hints of electronica and acoustic melodies. The direction barely tosses on an experimental shirt, but in this case, playing it safe works for a band like Good Charlotte.

Lyrics — 6
One of the most difficult things to do as a pop punk artist is to not sound like a heartsick 15-year-old who's songwriting is intended directly for members of the opposite sex. Good Charlotte accomplish this somewhat. The radio-friendly singles don't fall into the shameless clique thanks to Joel Madden and his lazed punk voices, but a few particular songwriting bits do inflict peer-pressure. "All that I remember, is that you had me at hello / I knew right when I met her is that I wouldn't take it slow," pleads Madden on "Last Night", a pop punk track disguised as a dance anthem.

Add in other songs with predictable lyrics ("Right Where I Belong") and Cardiology seems like it's headed for disaster, but put the blame on the album's construction. Madden holds his own as a vocalist on numerous tracks but gets overshadowed by numbers that come off as filler. The first 22 minutes flow but the trio of ballads that drop in sound and power-up on honesty question if the material was actually written in the last two years.

Overall Impression — 7
It's safe to announce, Good Charlotte aren't reinventing themselves and destroying any last drops of credibility they have left. Before the physical release, the group stated Cardiology was a more mature version of their self-titled entry into music, which is indeed crystal-clear. The album doesn't try to be a dance chart-topper. It doesn't pretend to be a hybrid of pop rock. It doesn't even flirt with modern pop punk. What it does is tap into the band's roots, drawing from the heart and speaking in a simple tongue that can satisfy any listener who once called themselves a Good Charlotte fan.

54 comments sorted by best / new / date

    IPlaySynth
    good_blink_plan wrote: Ivanvm wrote: Wow, is UG really this bad at writing? Just look at the headline. "It's safe to announce, Good Charlotte aren't reinventing themselves and destroying any last drops of credibility they have left." I understand perfectly. They aren't doing what they did on GMR.
    It should be "It's safe to say that Good Charlotte isn't reinventing itself with their last release, and many would say it has lost whatever credibility it still retained." The way the author of this review phrased that sentence would have meant that GC is more than one band, and they are not destroying their credibility, etc.
    huevos
    good_blink_plan wrote: Ivanvm wrote: Wow, is UG really this bad at writing? Just look at the headline. "It's safe to announce, Good Charlotte aren't reinventing themselves and destroying any last drops of credibility they have left." I understand perfectly. They aren't doing what they did on GMR.
    It's still phrased horribly. Not that it matters. The UG team has virtually no credibility when it comes to reviews. The robotic ambivalence towards music, coupled with terrible grammar, hasn't really helped their case.
    huevos
    lincjones wrote: boris6491 wrote: I was never a fan of this sort of music. I'm trying to work out why you aren't commenting here then? Also i hadn't listened to GC in ages when i bought this album and i like it. it's not as good Young and the hopeless but i think thats like saying Death Magnetic wasn't as good as Master of Puppets or A Thousand Suns wasn't as good as Hybrid Theory. Every popular band produces one album that their fans love and can never beat it.
    Sorry for the double post, but I think this has a lot to do with the issue of lesser known bands crossing into the mainstream. Once they get that critical and commercial breakthrough, they allow it to define themselves as a band and as musicians. With that, you get a handful of horrid efforts that try to reach that peak point they set for themselves. Either that, or the band just gets lazy and complacent, releasing albums solely for money. And they'll make that money if the happen to be a name b[r]and. Apply this to any number of bands, and you'll be surprised by how the pattern rarely fails (although it really shouldn't surprise anyone).
    evanharte123
    there are a few spots here where i don't know what the heck this guy is saying, so i agree with savage animal
    Savage Animal wrote: Feel like whoever wrote "It's safe to announce, Good Charlotte aren't reinventing themselves and destroying any last drops of credibility they have left." needs to brush up on their grammar
    brush up on the grammer for sure. But i feel pretty much the same way about this album. It's definitely playing it safe. All in all, great review.
    archangels
    I loved every single album Good Charlotte released up until this one. It seemed like they would reinvent their sound on every album. This one just feels like a lazy rehash of old music.
    chrisdazzo
    I'd give it a 6/10. There were two good songs, and the rest were very forgettable. Sad.
    good_blink_plan
    hriday_hazarika wrote: They were never relevant to begin with.
    Blink-182 never relevant? Listen to Anthem Part 2, and tell me they were never relevant. Listen to the whole Take Off album, and tell me that they were never relevant to anything or anybody.
    afireinside1994
    This is bullcrap. I love their new album, and I think it's really good. This is a horrible review. I think they've done better than they did before. Good Morning Revival was okay. It was just like. ehhhhh....
    imamusicadept
    evanharte123 wrote: there are a few spots here where i don't know what the heck this guy is saying, so i agree with savage animal Savage Animal wrote: Feel like whoever wrote "It's safe to announce, Good Charlotte aren't reinventing themselves and destroying any last drops of credibility they have left." needs to brush up on their grammar brush up on the grammer for sure. But i feel pretty much the same way about this album. It's definitely playing it safe. All in all, great review.
    this is grammatically correct, though slightly ambiguous, i don't see why everyone thinks its wrong.
    Tster
    hriday_hazarika wrote: Ranmanbassist18 wrote:The only band that is still relevant would have to be blink182 and im starting to suspect the new album wont live up to expectation They were never relevant to begin with.
    lies. Their album will be awesome.
    frnzd
    Makes me sad. The young and the hopeless was one of my very first albums ever and acted as a gateway to everything I love now. Still listen to that album with loving ears.
    smartflight
    I couldn't have fun past the first two tracks (introduction track included). By the fourth track, I couldn't care listening. It was so un-interesting. By the fifth, it was simply not happening and I stopped.
    smartflight
    Ranmanbassist18 wrote: its sad to see bands like Good Charlotte and simple plan come out with records thinking they would get every fan they had back. Isee these kind of bands as a phase in the 90's they were huge. Now that music has changed everyone has gone a different direction with the music they listen to.
    I guess you might be wrong. I still listen to Simple Plan (the band that changed) and I still listen to Linkin Park (the band that changed drastically). It's not about music taste, to me really. Anything that sounds amazing and is well worked on- I'm up for it, be it traditional rock, or a blend of techno, hiphop and rock.
    guitarist41
    They actually did destroy every last drop of credibility with that stupid remix album. Remixes are a no-no.
    Bananafish003
    krvolok wrote: Pop punk And that said it all.
    It's sad to see people so disillusioned by bands like Good Charlotte. Let me point out that pop-punk was once a great genre. Blink 182 and Green Day were brilliant. Then everyone else caught on and ultimately killed it, the sad story of many other genres (grunge comes to mind).
    gtrxprtkl
    woah woah woah, Good Charlotte is a great band. Why does what genre or credibility matter? As long as they produce a sound that people like, or a sound that I like, they're good in my eyes.
    faceless92
    Ok, honestly I don't understand why people are criticizing GMR. I thought that album was awesome, but for being five years later Cardiology did not live up to expectations, whatsoever. It's not a horrible album, but it's not close to being great either.
    Bassatron
    Thinks its retarded when people read a review just for an ego boost in pointing out a flaw in the author's grammar. Good Charlotte are a great band but they will never top The River again.
    lincjones
    boris6491 wrote: I was never a fan of this sort of music.
    I'm trying to work out why you aren't commenting here then? Also i hadn't listened to GC in ages when i bought this album and i like it. it's not as good Young and the hopeless but i think thats like saying Death Magnetic wasn't as good as Master of Puppets or A Thousand Suns wasn't as good as Hybrid Theory. Every popular band produces one album that their fans love and can never beat it.
    good_blink_plan
    Ivanvm wrote: Wow, is UG really this bad at writing? Just look at the headline.
    "It's safe to announce, Good Charlotte aren't reinventing themselves and destroying any last drops of credibility they have left." I understand perfectly. They aren't doing what they did on GMR.
    igc311
    hriday_hazarika wrote: Ranmanbassist18 wrote:The only band that is still relevant would have to be blink182 and im starting to suspect the new album wont live up to expectation They were never relevant to begin with.
    Like them or not blink 182 was probably the most influential rock band of that generation. Also, they're drawing bigger crowds now than ever.
    Savage Animal
    Feel like whoever wrote "It's safe to announce, Good Charlotte aren't reinventing themselves and destroying any last drops of credibility they have left." needs to brush up on their grammar
    guitarist41
    I love old GC(first three albums) but both this and the last album are just plain shite.
    thesaddestkey
    Feel like whoever wrote "It's safe to announce, Good Charlotte aren't reinventing themselves and destroying any last drops of credibility they have left." needs to brush up on their grammar - Amen!!! Break out the books and put away the Good Charlotte!
    Ranmanbassist18
    its sad to see bands like Good Charlotte and simple plan come out with records thinking they would get every fan they had back. Isee these kind of bands as a phase in the 90's they were huge. Now that music has changed everyone has gone a different direction with the music they listen to. The only band that is still relevant would have to be blink182 and im starting to suspect the new album wont live up to expectation
    hriday_hazarika
    Ranmanbassist18 wrote:The only band that is still relevant would have to be blink182 and im starting to suspect the new album wont live up to expectation
    They were never relevant to begin with.
    styxfan226
    hriday_hazarika wrote: Ranmanbassist18 wrote:The only band that is still relevant would have to be blink182 and im starting to suspect the new album wont live up to expectation They were never relevant to begin with.
    says you...
    lethaldosage45
    This should be their last album... can't get much worse. I liked some of their old stuff. Some of it was catchy. But they are just trying too hard!
    Zell182
    Decent album and a lot better than Good Morning Revival but nothing special compared to The Young And The Hopeless. This album starts off well but then takes a turn for the worse at Like It's Her Birthday and doesn't pick up again until 1979.
    nasedase
    The best pop punk bands are Sum 41, The Ataris, Blink 182, Yellowcard and New Found Glory and all of them have something in common. They evolved and changed up their style. So a word of advice would be to never try to force an old style, like Good Charlotte did, because that usually never works out well for any band of any genre(Death Magnetic and Korn III anyone?)
    awisinger
    nasedase wrote: The best pop punk bands are Sum 41, The Ataris, Blink 182, Yellowcard and New Found Glory and all of them have something in common. They evolved and changed up their style. So a word of advice would be to never try to force an old style, like Good Charlotte did, because that usually never works out well for any band of any genre(Death Magnetic and Korn III anyone?)
    I agree with you on a band needs to evolve and I personally like the bands you mentioned, however, this also leads to the fans who don't like the band changes. Blink lost lots of fans when their last album came out. Same with Sum 41 when they lost Brown Sound. New Found Glory had an album that wasn't as good as their old ones and lost fans, Yellowcard broke up and recently got back together. So either way the bands lost fans over time and missed their old style and didn't like the changes. Good Charlotte should be the example people on this website should use when people bitch about a band ditching their roots...I was never a huge Good Charlotte fan back in the day when they were relevant.
    Shinsen88
    I really lost interest in this band years ago. Nevertheless, this is a good, fair and balanced review.
    xagony
    its their best album up to now, i dont agree with anyone here -_- i am a fan of them since the chronicles of life and death. good morning revival was the worst but Cardiology is a great mix of their albums. I like it. GC till the end
    boris6491
    I was never a fan of this sort of music. I just personally never found it to be examples of skillful musicianship but rather oriented to ensure its suitability to be played on the radio. Nonetheless, GC did do well around the 2000s with the Young and the Hopeless and even Chronicles. Though most pop punk bands experience a heyday and then cannot match it.