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Two albums. Seven million records sold worldwide. A string of Top 40 hits like "I'd Do Anything," "Addicted," "Perfect" and "Welcome to My Life." A worldwide legion of fans who can testify to the power of one of the fiercest live shows ever to hit the boards. At this juncture, Lava/Atlantic rockers Simple Plan simply seem to have it locked. So for its crucial third album the group could just head back into the studio and do just what s worked so well in the past, right? Not quite.
Welcome to SIMPLE PLAN, not just an album but a statement of artistic ambition and growth from the Montreal-based quintet. As you'd expect from any band that would call its debut album NO PADS, NO HELMETS...JUST BALLS, the self-titled release is a fearless, without-a-net excursion into dynamic music-making, taking what we love best about Simple Plan -- the unbridled energy, the ripping guitars, the hook-filled melodic sensibility - and incorporating a slew of inventive sonic approaches informed by new collaborators such as Nate Danja Hills (Timbaland, Justin Timberlake, Duran Duran, Nelly Furtado), Max Martin (James Blunt, Kelly Clarkson, Avril Lavigne) and Dave Fortman (Evanescence, Mudvayne). The new equation yields 11 songs that are unquestionably Simple Plan but still sound unlike anything it s done before, from the loping synthesizer loops of the opening track and first single "When I'm Gone" to the tight dance groove and R&B flavor of "The End," the hip-hop styled beat of "Generation" and the unabashed power balladry of "I Can Wait Forever."
Simple Plan's third CD strikes to the swollen heart of emo, and maybe even pierces it a little. Compared with the band's first two albums, this eponymous one leans a shade more sedate, a bit less manic. Which is not to suggest that the boys don't bring it on this boringly titled 11-tracker. Trademark huge choruses crest in "Hold On" and "When I'm Gone," both of which edge toward the pure pop heart of the pop-punk divide. "I Can Wait Forever," a power ballad, makes you wonder whether the whiny-voiced front man Pierre Bouvier might have a few more genuinely reflective songs in him. Familiar themes bubble to the surface throughout: "Your Love Is a Lie" and "No Love" say everything about the band's commitment to upholding emo's core of self-pity and general despair. But it's not as if you'll be able to sit still and whine along as the songs roll on. Simple Plan's plan--to get you bouncing, bobbing, and otherwise grooving--is still simple. And like all uncomplicated strategies, it's still remarkably effective. --Tammy La Gorce
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Believe me, I am not a big fan of the electronic blips and blats that are littered throughout Simple Plan's third full length album. And I also might add that there are no less than 4 ballads on the album (one of which is a transparent re-write of Green Day's "Boulevard of Broken Dreams" and the other sounds way too much like the Backstreet Boys' "More Than That"). However, there IS a spectacular ballad on the disc, the piano-laden "I Can Wait Forever." Simple Plan is always at its best, though, when it attacks a straightforward rocker, such as "Time To Say Goodbye" and the hook-laden "Take My Hand." The boys don't always hit the mark, but they deserve props for not putting out the same album three times in a row....or like so many bands do, soften out completely (like Relient K). There is a good bit of guitar rock here, and far more hooks than other bands in this genre crank out every few years. I give it four stars because at times the sound is intriguing, and other times it is annoying (like on the disasterously embarrasing track "Generation'), and although the band goes to great lengths to sound different or unique, in some form or another, you have heard all of these songs before.
Here's a run-through of a few selected tracks:
When I'm Gone - First single off the album, big hook & chorus, but kind of slow-paced. Take My Hand - The beat sounds exactly like The Bravery's "Honest Mistake" but the hook is very catchy. Generation - Wretched synth intro, worse than Europe's "Final Countdown." This track is embarrassing. Time To Say Goodbye - Their trademark pop-punk sound. I Can Wait Forever - No, this is not a cover of the song by Air Supply. This is actually a great track and the best the band has ever done. Hope you enjoy.
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Simple Plan's first album was 100% pop punk, with songs that portrayed stories about how miserable their lives were as teenagers, such as "I'm Just a Kid" and "The Worst Day Ever." These songs were solid pop punk songs and were enjoyable to listen to. Simple Plan's second album showed that the band grew up from their first album with more mature lyrics. However, many of the song were still pessimistic like "Welcome to My Life" and "Jump." I liked their first two albums and the new album "Simple Plan" is no exception. Of course, the genre of music on this new album has changed. Most of the songs on the first two albums were pop punk or punk rock, as well as just rock. This album mixes the elements of pop, rock, alternative, punk,hip hop and even electronica into one unique package. The songs on this album also show maturity from Simple Plan. Below is a list of ratings for each song on the album:
1)WHEN I'M GONE- The first single off the album, this song mixes electronic elements with their classic punk rock genre. Its a good starting single- 9/10
2)TAKE MY HAND- This song starts off sounding like a song from their old albums (punk rock) but when it enters the second verse, electronic elements are added for effects. I like this song, but its not my favorite on the album- 8/10.
3)THE END- This is a critical turning point song for Simple Plan. The first part of the song sounds like the beginning of a electronica/dance track. But once the song gets into the chorus, it switches to pop punk. Its one of the better songs on the album- 9/10.
4)YOUR LOVE IS A LIE- This song sounds like a replica of "Boulevard of Broken Dreams" from Green Day. Its pure punk rock with a little tweaking from producers; solid song- 8/10.Read more ›
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ultimately i give this album a 4.5 out of 5. after reading the reviews and seeing how some were bad, i decided that i have to go to this bands defense because this record seriously isn't that bad. sure they changed and there are some beats in it, its not a bad thing. it kind of gos with how the songs are. and its not like the beats are throughout the entire songs, they are just brought in here and there. and for those saying that they didn't write their own songs, well guess what? they did, they aren't a band that would all of a sudden not write any songs. pierre's voice is so much more better in this album and we get to here sebastien's voice too more in this album and his voice is also a very good voice that is unde . and of course david's is always the same...good. the lyrics are so much more grown up and deals with personal situations such as "love is a lie" and "save you".
sure this album is a HUGE step from still not getting any...(my fav album by them), but they still maintained who they are. which is something every band should maintain...their true selves. you can tell that they are growing up musically, look at their first album; no pads, no helmets...just balls, you can tell they were all young there. sebastien was just 18/19 years old at that time and the others were under 24 i believe. here you can see that they took the risk and i believe it was a great job and i cant wait to see a show of theirs with these songs performed live.