After a line-up reshuffle and 2011’s disappointing ‘Neighbourhoods’, the arrival of a new Blink-182 album is understandably approached with as much trepidation as excitement.
Any worries are quickly dismissed with the likes of ‘Bored To Death’ and ‘No Future’ channelling the band’s self-titled era-esque ability to mix serious subject matter with the catchiest of earworms. Elsewhere they burrow even deeper into their history with speedy, fizzy punk numbers like ‘Cynical’ and ‘She’s Out Of Her Mind’. There’s a sense of relief in them writing songs like this again and it feels like a celebration.
However the Matt Skiba-shaped elephant in the room must be addressed. The Alkaline Trio mainman being drafted in as Tom DeLonge’s replacement makes more and more sense after a couple of run throughs of this album. His pained tones on the acoustic balladry of ‘Home Is Such A Lonely Place’ save the song from slipping into sappy territory and proves that Blink’s new co-vocalists are just as apt as tugging on heartstrings as the original duo were.
Blink-182 have delivered an album that recalls everything that makes this band great and gives it all a fresh twist, the end result is ‘California’ being amongst the best albums they’ve ever produced.
Blink are also on the cover of our latest issue, get your copy here...