Album Review: Time of My Life - 3 Doors Down

by - Thursday, August 18, 2011

currently: listening to 'Superman' by Moi. LOVE this song, and the video is quite cute :)

So I had a lot of fun reviewing this album. If you follow me on Twitter (*plug@mellienzplug*) you may have a hint as to what I gave the album, but if you haven't seen it, or read it in issue 18 of 'debate', feel free to read it all below. :)

Time of My Life - 3 Doors Down
Rating: C

I was quite eager to listen to 3 Doors Down’s latest album. Their previous hits, Let Me Go and Here Without You, gained a large play count in my iTunes throughout my high school years. So I imagined that listening to them again would be like having a memorable reunion with an old high school friend. However I didn’t expect that our reunion would have been as dull as it was.

I’m going to be blunt here and say that Time of My Life seems to show that 3 Doors Down is well past its time. I’m not too sure what happened since their last album in 2008, but in an album that the band felt was “up to another level”, this certainly missed that mark. The album starts off strong with some punchy aggressive guitar at the beginning of the album’s title track, Time of My Life. However, everything begins to fall once the vocals come into play. Already at the first verse, the guitars and the vocals of front man, Brad Arnold, are struggling for centre attention. And although the lyrics sound powerful when being screamed over guitars, in actual fact the words are uninspiring and a bit amateur, which is disappointing for a band that is meant to have four albums’ experience under their belt.

Their second track, When You’re Young, drops the pace quite quickly, which feels a bit strange to do so early in the album. But the song is a bit of an improvement to the previous track and in a song trying to do some soul searching and melancholy begging for younger times, the tone is reminiscent of their (better) previous work.

And after that track, everything starts to feel a bit predictable and forgettable. Lyrics soon begin to feel repetitive and amateurish, with the third track Round and Round having the oh-so-cliché chorus singing “Round and round and round and round we go. Where we’re gonna stop no body knows.” (You can imagine by the end of the song it was really irritating to listen to.)

Out of the 12 tracks on this album, very few are memorable. While writing notes on the songs for this album, I got too tired writing the same comments for each track, which either said "predictable lyrics”, “full of clichés and repetition”, and “sounds like Nickelback”. The last track Believer however does some last minute redeeming for this album with some much needed energy through strong guitar rifts, hard guitar solos and some gritty vocals. The lyrics are also much better for this track, it’s just a shame the whole album couldn’t have been more like this song.

Time of My Life is not necessarily a bad rock album; I wouldn’t have given it a passing grade otherwise. It fulfils the criteria and ticks all the needed boxes for strong lead guitars, solid drumming and having a guy with a rough voice adding a bit of toughness to the tracks. However, all the album does is follow the generic formula for a rock album, not bothering to test the boundaries or breaking the rules, which is what an A+ rock album needs. This album is all too average. So if you need rock music to blend into the background, look to this album. If you’re looking for a good 3 Doors Down album, don’t choose this.

On a separate related music side note: if you're a big Switchfoot fan (like me :D), Switchfoot are giving away an advance copy of their upcoming album Vice Verses (released 27th September!). Learn about Switchfoot's #ViceVerses Twitter Campaign and tweet to the world what your vice verses are (so you can share the album with me!) :D
My vice verses?
Enter away!

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