All Things Bright And Beautiful review by Owl City

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  • Released: Jun 14, 2011
  • Sound: 6
  • Lyrics: 5
  • Overall Impression: 6
  • Reviewer's score: 5.7 Decent
  • Users' score: 7.3 (51 votes)
Owl City: All Things Bright And Beautiful
0

Sound — 6
Owl City is known for it's smooth synthpop sound and they stay true to this sound throughout "All Things Bright And Beautiful". There isn't a new "Fireflies" or "Vanilla Twilight" on this album, but all the tracks are solid for what they are. The album is well mixed, and permeates a feeling of optimism. There are 12 tracks on the standard edition release (which I have). There are bonus tracks if purchased via iTunes. Adam Young had 3 separate guest stars on this album. On the song "Honey And The Bee", he is assisted with vocals by Breanne Duren (who is a solo artist, and also part of Owl City's touring band). On the song "Alligator Sky", Adam Young is joined on the track by Shawn Chrystopher (a rapper best known for a mixtape release called "I.W.G."). On the track "The Yacht Club", Adam Young is joined by Lights, which is the stage name of Lights Valerie Poxleitner, who is a Juno Award winning singer-songwriter. "All Things Bright And Beautiful" sounds a lot like the pop music coming out right now, except maybe it is better than most of it. The album is VERY heavily produced, the vocals are auto-tuned, and the progressions and melodies are predictable.

Lyrics — 5
The lyrics from "All Things Bright And Beautiful" at times are very powerful, but at other times seem like the poetry written in an emo high school student's notebook. Lyrics such as "It's seventh heaven because there are angels all around, Among my frivolous thoughts, I believe there are beautiful things seen by the astronauts. So wake me if you're out there!" from "Angels" come across as weak and contrived. I tried to keep an open mind when listening to this album, but the lyrics really seem like they are definitely geared towards attracting a certain type of fan young girls, and hipster young teens. The vocal delivery is so auto-tuned, I have no clue if Adam Young can actually sing. I hear he has done most of the work on the album himself, so I guess he is good at using recording equipment, etc. He is good at coming up with poppy songs with hooks. I have no clue, however, if he can sing.

Overall Impression — 6
I wasn't even remotely impressed with "All Things Bright And Beautiful". Also, this album isn't my normal style of music, though I really did try to give it a fair shake. On the other hand, if you liked the other two Owl City albums, then you will like this one as well. The songs seem really light and airy and like they would be good for background music maybe on a drive. If I had to pick favorite songs on this album, I would have to say "Kamikaze", "Honey And The Bee" and "Dreams Don't Turn To Dust". I actually would say "Honey And The Bee" is by far the best song on the album.

32 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Jsteele1408
    What a surprise, the users of UG (the go-to site for music trolls and elitist pricks) gave the new Owl City album a terribly low rating. If you don't like the music, then you have no business reviewing it. Just because it's not the music you enjoy doesn't mean it's still not a good album. Unless the album was composed entirely of incoherent buzzing noises, feedback, and the sound of a man speaking in the background about how much he likes to watch foot-porn, it doesn't deserve a 1.5 out of 10.
    AVAEmpire2009
    pwninator123 wrote: Look up Sky Sailing
    Pwninator has a point. Sky Sailing, Port Blue, Seagul Orchestra. He is talented with instruments. Just because he choses to use a synth under this name doesnt mean he's a bad musician. In fact he's a brilliant musician that writes his music from the heart and not for the charts. And it thats what it takes to be called a bad musician in todays world? I'm moving to the moon with Adam and anyone else that feels the same
    EpiExplorer
    Jsteele1408 wrote: What a surprise, the users of UG (the go-to site for music trolls and elitist pricks) gave the new Owl City album a terribly low rating. If you don't like the music, then you have no business reviewing it. Just because it's not the music you enjoy doesn't mean it's still not a good album. Unless the album was composed entirely of incoherent buzzing noises, feedback, and the sound of a man speaking in the background about how much he likes to watch foot-porn, it doesn't deserve a 1.5 out of 10.
    There's no point bashing your fellow bro'z, I'm sure everyone who doesn't own a radio would dislike this. Besides, complaining about opinions on a music site is pointless, the music industry is based on opinions. This entire post is one opinion in a sea of millions of opinions, the scale of how monstrously irrelavant this post is and the opinions gone before and coming after it is flying off into the atmosphere from your computer. Owl City is still god-awful, anyway.
    Mark Roxx
    I've heard his whole first album. Involuntarily. It was bad, needless to say. Don't see how this could be much better considering the genre hasn't changed.
    ninjagayden777
    Ok enough review. This album is absolute crap though. Honestly tried to like it, but just can't :/
    angelorexm
    Why don't you people understand? You all like the new, songs with lyrics about drugs, sex, and killing? What is wrong with the people today?
    xxchococatxx
    And by the way, if you've seen Adam in concert, you can tell that his vocals on the album aren't too auto-tuned. They're tweaked a little, but they are for even the best live artists anyhow. Also, how was the music for "Kamikaze" predictable? I actually didn't expect a song like that to be on ATBAB, but I still loved the song anyhow, and it seems to be a fan favorite anyhow. He performed it on his tour--which was AMAZING, by the way. I must agree, though, that "Honey and the Bee" is an amazing song and by far one of my favorites from the album. I also like "Deer in the Headlights," "Kamikaze," "The Yacht Club," "The Real World," and (my absolute favorite) "Plant Life," but that's probably half of the album. LOL. All of the songs are amazing, and so are the songs from his equally awesome side projects, like Sky Sailing.
    xxchococatxx
    This review absolutely SCREAMS bias. No, Adam's lyrics don't sound like they come from an emo kid's notebook, because Adam's NOT emo. His music HAS changed, lyrically and musically, but some of the music still reflects back on his old style. For example, "The Real World" stays a little more true to the style of music featured on his freshman album Ocean Eyes, but it's more polished than tracks on albums previous to ATBAB. Meanwhile, songs like "The Yacht Club," which has much more of a dance-y feel; "Kamikaze," which was intentionally meant to sound like a B-side, according to Adam Young; and "Galaxies," which musically was inspired by trance music, are a lot different compared to some of his older songs, yet still somewhat true to his original style, blending in quirky, unusual lyrics into heartfelt and meaningful songs. I love it much more than Ocean Eyes, although I still love his older music as well. Adam said that his music changed for the better, and I must agree. Everyone just needs to give Adam a break already. Just because his music's synth-pop/electronic doesn't mean that it's total crap, and just because his lyrics can be hard to figure out at times doesn't mean he's on drugs. Seriously. Just give him a freaking break.
    graciepoo713
    He's a good musician. He's an INCREDIBLE songwriter. I can't think of anyone else who can write songs like him. He was given amazing talent, and he uses it well! If you think his lyrics are stupid, check all the other songs that are popular. They all have the shittiest lyrics. Don't say Adam is ruining the music industry. Anyone who loves Owl City's previous albums will love ATBAB!
    Lucas Johner
    AVAEmpire2009 I'm coming with you on your trip with Adam! You have no choice. He is actually such a good musician!
    pwninator123
    katalyzt13 wrote: Lucas Johner wrote: I actually REALLY like Owl City! It's such a pure, slean sound (obviously because mostly everything is electronic). But Adam Young is in fact an amazing musician! You hear it when he plays guitar in some songs, especially in his Sky Sailing album! Don't hate. He's making an amazing career out of it isn't he? This album reached 2nd on the US iTunes charts today! I don't begrudge anyone their success, but just because he is successful doesn't mean the music is good. I find it hard to believe that he really plays guitar in any Owl City recording - seems like from what I've listened to it would either be sampled or synthesized guitar...
    Look up Sky Sailing, his project before Owl City, he does a lot of acoustic work on it. In fact, look up A Little Opera Goes A Long Way by Sky Sailing, the acoustic riff is absolutely mesmerizing.
    EpiExplorer
    Horlicks wrote: Worst album title ever.
    Bring me the Horizon took that award a while ago.
    pwninator123
    I quite love Owl City, I know he isn't the greatest, but he's an amazing musician, an entertaining singer, and a whimsically enjoyable lyricist. Sure he may be diet Postal Service, but he wears it well. Also, did you REALLY describe his lyrics as Emo? That's embarrassing.
    AVAEmpire2009
    Would just like to say. My opinnion does matter as does everyone elses. also I love owl city and i dont own a radio. Final point being that im not listening to this review as anyone that refers to Owl City as "they" hasnt done the necesary research.
    Jsteele1408
    DimebagLivesOn wrote: So only reviews of people fellating the album should be published? Makes sense.
    Scroll up and read, I'm not typing it again.
    DimebagLivesOn
    Jsteele1408 wrote: What a surprise, the users of UG (the go-to site for music trolls and elitist pricks) gave the new Owl City album a terribly low rating. If you don't like the music, then you have no business reviewing it. Just because it's not the music you enjoy doesn't mean it's still not a good album. Unless the album was composed entirely of incoherent buzzing noises, feedback, and the sound of a man speaking in the background about how much he likes to watch foot-porn, it doesn't deserve a 1.5 out of 10.
    So only reviews of people fellating the album should be published? Makes sense.
    Dpullam
    Jsteele1408 wrote: EpiExplorer wrote: There's no point bashing your fellow bro'z, I'm sure everyone who doesn't own a radio would dislike this. Besides, complaining about opinions on a music site is pointless, the music industry is based on opinions. This entire post is one opinion in a sea of millions of opinions, the scale of how monstrously irrelavant this post is and the opinions gone before and coming after it is flying off into the atmosphere from your computer. Owl City is still god-awful, anyway. My issue isn't with people voicing their opinions. If they don't like it, that's fine. It's the people that just mindlessly bash it, and give things abysmal ratings just because they don't like it. "lol this sux 1 out of 10" mentality seems to dominate this site. When I dislike something, there's usually a reason for it, and I have the ability to understand that even though it isn't my cup of tea, someone out there might like it. Unless the album was composed of horrible production, off-key vocals, or other obviously deficient characteristics, it's not worthy of the lowest possible rating, regardless of musical taste.
    I actually agree with you.
    Jsteele1408
    EpiExplorer wrote: There's no point bashing your fellow bro'z, I'm sure everyone who doesn't own a radio would dislike this. Besides, complaining about opinions on a music site is pointless, the music industry is based on opinions. This entire post is one opinion in a sea of millions of opinions, the scale of how monstrously irrelavant this post is and the opinions gone before and coming after it is flying off into the atmosphere from your computer. Owl City is still god-awful, anyway.
    My issue isn't with people voicing their opinions. If they don't like it, that's fine. It's the people that just mindlessly bash it, and give things abysmal ratings just because they don't like it. "lol this sux 1 out of 10" mentality seems to dominate this site. When I dislike something, there's usually a reason for it, and I have the ability to understand that even though it isn't my cup of tea, someone out there might like it. Unless the album was composed of horrible production, off-key vocals, or other obviously deficient characteristics, it's not worthy of the lowest possible rating, regardless of musical taste.
    Bananafish003
    JB95 wrote: Synthpop... NO
    There's good synthpop...this isn't it. I can almost understand your position with the recent trends...
    Jsteele1408
    MethLabForCutie wrote: not true, my friend. bands like sunn o))) do remarkably well in the ratings area. though, im not sure if anything has to do with foot-porn. what you describe is definitely out there though!
    I was attempting to describe sounds you might hear due to absolutely terrible recording. Sunn O))) does it on purpose.
    cpaskous
    katalyzt13 wrote: Lucas Johner wrote: I actually REALLY like Owl City! It's such a pure, slean sound (obviously because mostly everything is electronic). But Adam Young is in fact an amazing musician! You hear it when he plays guitar in some songs, especially in his Sky Sailing album! Don't hate. He's making an amazing career out of it isn't he? This album reached 2nd on the US iTunes charts today! I don't begrudge anyone their success, but just because he is successful doesn't mean the music is good. I find it hard to believe that he really plays guitar in any Owl City recording - seems like from what I've listened to it would either be sampled or synthesized guitar...
    He actually does play guitar.
    imspazzen
    I liked the "Maybe I'm Dreaming" album, but honestly all of his songs sound the same.
    katalyzt13
    Lucas Johner wrote: I actually REALLY like Owl City! It's such a pure, slean sound (obviously because mostly everything is electronic). But Adam Young is in fact an amazing musician! You hear it when he plays guitar in some songs, especially in his Sky Sailing album! Don't hate. He's making an amazing career out of it isn't he? This album reached 2nd on the US iTunes charts today!
    I don't begrudge anyone their success, but just because he is successful doesn't mean the music is good. I find it hard to believe that he really plays guitar in any Owl City recording - seems like from what I've listened to it would either be sampled or synthesized guitar...
    Jennzifur2go
    aaw. haha I really do like this album, though I do like Owl City. The only bad thing about it, (to me,) is that the songs get old kinda fast. But, I do really like it.
    MethLabForCutie
    Jsteele1408 wrote: What a surprise, the users of UG (the go-to site for music trolls and elitist pricks) gave the new Owl City album a terribly low rating. If you don't like the music, then you have no business reviewing it. Just because it's not the music you enjoy doesn't mean it's still not a good album. Unless the album was composed entirely of incoherent buzzing noises, feedback, and the sound of a man speaking in the background about how much he likes to watch foot-porn, it doesn't deserve a 1.5 out of 10.
    not true, my friend. bands like sunn o))) do remarkably well in the ratings area. though, im not sure if anything has to do with foot-porn. what you describe is definitely out there though!
    Lucas Johner
    I actually REALLY like Owl City! It's such a pure, slean sound (obviously because mostly everything is electronic). But Adam Young is in fact an amazing musician! You hear it when he plays guitar in some songs, especially in his Sky Sailing album! Don't hate. He's making an amazing career out of it isn't he? This album reached 2nd on the US iTunes charts today!