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7/10

All Time Low - Dirty Work

Amy Bangs
Amy Bangs 7 June at 09.00
All Time Low - Dirty Work Cover

'Dirty Work' highlights what makes All Time Low such a draw...

All Time Low’s music attracts a level of fandom beyond what they probably ever could’ve imagined – but for better or worse, they haven’t forgotten the key elements that define their sound. Musically, ‘Dirty Work’ highlights what makes them such a draw – from the onset of opener ‘Do You Want Me (Dead?)’ through to powerful closing track ‘Heroes’, it’s still super-catchy, but has enough of a rock edge to differentiate it from radio-friendly pop. For any criticism they get for singing about girls, they’re blunt, honest and relatable in a way that similar bands aren’t (frankly, Alex Gaskarth’s spoken-word assault on ‘Forget About It’ is far more effective than some drawn-out metaphor). That’s not to say that they’ve shunned the lyrics that have characterised the band since their 05 debut ‘The Party Scene’, either – but when set to a song as simple as ‘I Feel Like Dancin’’, the effect comes off as more throwaway than fun. Nonetheless, it’s not entirely fair that upgrading your sound is scoffed at a little, if not totally discounted, when the direction is a poppier one – All Time Low’s songs are more up-scale and better put-together on this record, and that takes some serious work.

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