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Album reviews
Artist:
The Neighbourhood
Album:
Chip Chrome & The Mono-Tones
Release year:
2020
Label:
Columbia
28 October 2020 / by Sonia Bermas (author)

Movement: Indie rock, Alternative rock

Lane: Sir Sly, Cigarettes After Sex 

 

Formed in California, The Neighbourhood is an incredibly diverse indie band that's been traversing a variety of genres over the years. Since the success of their hit single ‘Sweater Weather’, the band has skyrocketed in popularity. And coming out with their fourth studio album Chip Chrome & the Mono-Tones, their new LP can make you feel like the main character of a coming of age novel.

The album takes a much slower pace than their previous work and focuses more on the personal lives of the band members through personas of Chip Chrome & the Mono-Tones. In 'Lost in Translation', Chip Chrome (Jesse Rutherford) vocalizes communication issues between him and his partner in their relationship. He sings about misinterpreting their signals and not understanding how to approach their issues.

Chip speaks about his partner not giving him enough attention and how he is unsatisfied with receiving only a miniscule piece of their time. He sees this relationship as a game in which he is ready to give up, questioning “Baby, why you gotta keep me hangin'?/It's like an apple of temptation, oh yeah/You let me get a bite, out of sight, out of mind.”

The album then transitions to Chip Chrome’s battle with addiction in ‘Cherry Flavoured’. With a slow tone and soft drumbeats, the track simulates a high. Chip feels like a shadow of who he once was and not his full self with lyrics like “I gotta take control now/But I sold my soul a long time ago/I feel like a ghost now.” The track is also a reference to Rutherford’s struggles to find a sense of self in this fast-paced world he’s been thrust upon.

Although there are a couple bops on this album there are also a few miscues. One of those miscues being ‘Devil’s Advocate’ trying to take a more futuristic sound but failing to hit like the others. It’s a personal reflection of Rutherford and his struggle with being in a band versus going solo. Ultimately he suggests that the band stays together for their fans, shown through the lyrics “They don't always like me/I stay together for the kids, uh/I gotta do the right thing.”

Chip Chrome & the Mono-Tones is very different from their previous work, with a slower pace and personal tone The Neighbourhood exposes themselves and their truth. However, this album just doesn’t stand out as the rest do. This album may not be their best work but they did not disappoint their fans with this project. It doesn't matter which style of music the band decides to play with, The Neighbourhood is here to stay.

 

Rating: 6.5/10

Bops: Lost in Translation, Cherry Flavoured

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The author

Sonia Bermas

I’m a first-year Ryerson J-schooler bringing a fresh and truthful voice to the journalism community. Born and raised in Toronto, I know all about the city and all the opportunities it has to share....

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