When Tom Delonge says that his band’s latest album is “like blending Radiohead and U2 together", it’s hard to take him seriously. Maybe it’s because this is the same guy who once sang “I know a guy who has sex with his sister/He used his **** to pop her four-foot blister”. Maybe it’s because his whiney voice is more reminiscent of a male Avril Lavigne than it is of Bono or Thom Yorke. Or maybe it’s because after two mediocre efforts, it’s fairly safe to say that Angels & Airwaves (often referred to as AvA) will never be in the same league as U2 or Radiohead.
Whatever the reason, it’s still hard not to admire Delonge’s ambition. Following the implosion of blink-182, Delonge could have easily replicated his previous success by forming another pop-punk trio singing about sex and teenage rebellion. Instead, he decided to pull his head in and attempt to create what he considered to be the best band in the world. The music was as epic as it was pretentious. The lyrics were uplifting and anthemic, albeit clichéd. Everything seemed to fit the template of a stadium rock band. The only thing holding Angels & Airwaves back was Delonge’s lack of songwriting ability.
The main gripe I have with Angels & Airwaves is the constant failure of their music to reach a satisfying climax. Some of their songs have intros that last up to three minutes, only to lead to something tremendously underwhelming. It’s as though Delonge has the idea in his head, but he is unable to put it into motion in the real world.
If you’re expecting the band’s third studio effort to be an improvement on the first two albums, you are setting yourself up to be severely disappointed. To put it simply, LOVE continues from where I-Empire finished, which coincidentally is where We Don’t Need to Whisper left us. LOVE closer “Some Origins of Fire” could have easily replaced “Valkyrie Missile” as the opening track to We Don’t Need to Whisper
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