For Fans Of
The Maine first got my attention with their cover of an Akon song on ‘Punk Goes Crunk,’ I hate Akon with a passion but I thought they did a pretty decent job of turning his crappy music into a semi-decent rock song. It would appear that on further investigation, this would be the only good move The Maine had made in my personal opinion, as their debut album ‘Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop,‘ was essentially, boring.
Knowing that they are good musicians I figured I would give their follow-up, ‘Black & White,’ a chance to redeem the band. It didn’t.
The group has taken a huge step closer to the "radio rock" world, and if at all possible, the lyrics are even cornier than those found on the debut. The main issue is a simple lack of creativity, it almost seems like the band isn’t even trying to have an original sound as all of the songs follow standard structures with an "insert guitar solo here followed by a soft break down" type of feel.
Vocalist John O’Callaghan has a great voice but it is not enough to save the songs from the poor lyrics and lack of memorable melodies. The music on this record can be likened to bands like The Fray, the difference being, The Fray actually have some damn catchy chorus lines that get stuck in your head, The Maine do not.
The final nail in the coffin for this record is the fact that six of the ten songs on the album were co-written by various non-band members, and they still aren’t very good. The strongest track on the record is ‘Inside Of You,’ probably the catchiest and most solid rock song on the album but possibly made better due to the lack of quality in everything else.
Simply put, The Maine are just not good enough to be making this style of music. More is expected of "radio rock" albums these days and the bar has been set by records like Jimmy Eat World’s ‘Invented,’ and when looked at on that level, ‘Black & White’ doesn’t even come close.
1. Don’t Stop Now
2. Right Girl
3. Growing Up
4. Fuel to the Fire
5. Inside Of You
6. Every Road
7. Listen to Your Heart
8. Saving Grace
9. Give It to Me