Archive for the ‘Goo Goo Dolls – Magnetic’ Category

Goo Goo Dolls – Magnetic

The Goo Goo Dolls were the first concert I ever went to when they opened up for 10,000 Maniacs back in 1993.  I became obsessed with them and more importantly their album Superstar Car Wash, one of the most underrated albums of the 1990’s.  I got to see them again at the now defunct BuzzardFest at Blossom Music Center, purchasing my first of many concert t-shirts.

They followed up that album with A Boy Named Goo, an equally hard-hitting rock album, but this time around they had a little ballad called Name that set them catapulting towards stardom.  Suddenly lead singer Johnny Reznik realized that his music would be much more suited to 30-something soccer mom’s and sappy radio airplay, than teenage-angst.  I tuned out.

The thing with the Goo Goo Dolls is that they toiled in obscurity for so long as sort of wannabe punk rockers, but what they really wanted to become (like any rock band) was rich and famous.  In some ways I can respect that, however turning out connect-the-dots crap over and over has to get old at some point.  2006’s Let Love In actually showed glimpses of hope with more focused songs, but that was all lost when Something For The Rest Of Us was rolled out in 2010, a paint by numbers attempt.

Magnetic marks their 10th album, and I felt I should once again give them a try, hoping that I may hear some of that music that turned me on to them almost 20 years ago.  The first single Rebel Beat is a clap-along for children, while When the World Breaks Your Heart fits the Goo Goo Dolls formula to a T with heavier guitars attempting to reclaim their past….close.  Slow it Down, Come to Me, Caught in the Storm, Bulletproofangel, all sound like they belong on the soundtrack of a Disney movie.  Completely interchangeable as are most of the songs. Nothing really stands out at all.   There’s nothing new here, they’re just following the mold, but at this point does it even really matter?  They’re not trying to get any new or different fans.

The album does however end on a high note with Keep the Car Running.  No, thank god it’s not an Arcade Fire cover, but it is more of an epic, powerhouse of a love song that I wanted to hate at first, given the nature of the album, but found myself loving by the end.

If doing the same thing over and over again with the same result is the definition of insanity, then the Goo Goo Dolls are cashing checks in that department.

Grade C-