Goo Goo Dolls
Dizzy Up The Girl



by Andrew H. EMERITUS
January 16th, 2005 | 16 replies | 8,164 views

Release Date: 1998 | Tracklist

Before their unexpected hit, "Name", The Goo Goo Dolls churned out continuous releases of snot nosed Replacements imitations (the group's orginial sound was melodic and thrashy, similar to the origins of the Replacements). At least that's how their critics saw them (the group's original name was the "Sex Maggots", enough said). But after "Name", and the single "Iris" which was used for the Nicolas Cage and Meg Ryan movie "City Of Angels", the band had refined their sound enough to be enjoyed by mainstream audiences and they became one of the most adult contemporary groups of the 90s. Many of the groups of their time sounded strange becoming mainstream but in the case of The Goo Goo Dolls, becoming a mainstream band actually improved their sound. After the second breakthrough single, "Iris" spent a mindblowing 18 weeks at number one on the Billboard airplay chart it was nominated for three grammys. It was in the middle of this airplay marathon that the group released their album "Dizzy Up The Girl". It sold three million copies. The group's transformation into the mainstream was complete.

The Goo Goo Dolls' mainstream sound is a much more mature, polished and overall enjoyable listen than the group's early sound. While this sound will completely throw off listeners who enjoyed the group's early sound, for those who jumped on the bandwagon with "Name" or "Iris", this record is a very worthy choice. As you would expect from a pop-rock record, it's the singles that shine on this album and there is really nothing on this album that tops any of the five singles. The album also does suffer from filler tracks such as "January Friend" but many of the songs that aren't singles are well worth a listen ("Hate This Place" is up there with the better ones).In terms of consistency, this album isn't the greatest, but there is no doubt that anyone who has enjoyed any of the band's mainstream work will find plenty to like on here.

One of the things that has matured best is Johnny Rzeznik's songwriting. Lyrically, his work is excellent and his songs are full of single lines that stay in the listener's head for days and days and although these single lines are great by themselves, the songs are entirely full of them. The themes also manage to be personal without being obnoxious. The lyrics, however are just the tip of the iceberg. The guitar and bass riffs are great and the drums are good without getting in the way. Musically though, this album shines in the way the guitar and string arrangements are so well put together. "Iris" is probably the best example, but there is greatness all through the album on tracks such as "Black Balloon". However, the single best part of Rzeznik's songwriting is the way that he builds everything in the song, (whether it be lyrics, musical arrangements or sustained backing vocal parts) towards an extremely catchy, enjoyable and inspriring chorus. Though it may be slightly overrating him to call him a songwriting genius, he certainly is brilliant. It's just excellent songwriting that is easy to decipher and needs to be heard to be understood.

Despite being a mainstream pop-rock band, The Goo Goo Dolls aren't quite the same as everything else. It could be Johnny Rzeznik's unique style of songwriting, or it could be his great voice that works incredibly in the context of The Goo Goo Dolls, but probably wouldn't work anywhere else. Maybe it's the unique tone of their instruments. Or it could just be their great lyrics. Whatever the case, these guys are more original than nearly any one of their peers. The album's track list is also in a great order. "Hate This Place" sounds excellent as the album's closer.

The Australian release of of the album contained two extra tracks, the first one being "Name" (the band's excellent breakthrough single) which is quite similar to "Iris" and the second one being "Slave Girl" which displays their early thrashy, snotty sound of the group. With this release, most listeners probably won't need to buy anything else from the mainstream era of the group. "Name" isn't officially one of the album's songs, but it is still one of the best on this particular release.

- Brilliant songwriting
- So many catchy hooks
- Good mix of different sounds, while still sounding familar all the way through
- Johnny Rzeznik's guitar and vocal tones are both unique and sound great
- Though there is some filler, there is nothing horrible

- A considerable amount of filler
- The mainstream sound will dissapoint fans of the older sound
- Some listeners may get bored easily

Reccomended Tracks
Black Baloon


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user ratings (353)
other reviews of this album
meep17 (4)
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Comments:Add a Comment 
December 31st 2004


I used to love Iris a few years ago.Though I haven't listened to the whole album, I like the singles very much. Good review br3ad:thumb:

December 31st 2004


I think they're one of those bands that everyone likes but are often ashamed to admit it (though I'm sure Tangy hates them). It's hard not to enjoy "Slide" when it comes on the radio.

I must also point out that Johnny has the awesomest hair, I want it.

December 31st 2004


With three million people who bought this album, some of you could at least comment

Dark Hero
December 31st 2004


Here is a comment, great review :thumb: I think these guys are ok, they had some good songs and some not so good songs.

January 1st 2005


Yeah this album was the end of their transistion to mainstream, but as the review said, it was definately a step that, musically, took them in the right direction. Although you've gotta love some of their old thrashers like Cuz You're Gone or Lucky Star. Great Review.

March 1st 2005


very good album and good review

July 13th 2005


Album Rating: 4.5

This is one of my all-time favorite albums, and you wrote an excellent review (although I loved "January Friend"). Also, the filler isn't that obvious or bad, although I guess it doesn't matter too much because half of the album eventually was released as singles! ;)

July 14th 2005


I wouldn't say it's the best on the album. Black Balloon is easily better and so is Broadway and Slide, imo. Thanks though.

July 15th 2005


These guys are my ultimate guilty pleasure. Great review, although I'm a bit upset you didn't pick Acoustic #3 as a track pick. I also agree that Johnny is a brilliant songwriter.

Iris the Platypus
August 19th 2005


Yeah, I loved Acoustic #3. All Eyes on Me was a greatgreat song as well. Though Black Balloon still remains to be my favorite song, ever. I love how you commented on the excellent songwriting, and the way you phrased that whole paragraph describes my feelings about it exactly. I was kind of saddened out that this album didn't sell had a bunch of hit singles. Prolly my favorite album of all time, and one of the only albums that I'll actually listen to the singles from, cuz, yeah, for them, they GENERALLY tend to be the best.

August 19th 2005


black balloon rocks. iris has become so overplayed now, which is fkn sad

September 4th 2005


yeah black balloon is like a masterpiece almost like there rock opera of the 90s if u know what i mean

January 21st 2014


Album Rating: 4.0

The late 90s (and just the whole decade in general) had great pop music

Digging: Queens of the Stone Age - Lullabies to Paralyze

Green Baron
January 21st 2014


Album Rating: 4.0

And I don't want the world to see me...........

Digging: Chevelle - La Gargola

January 21st 2014


Album Rating: 4.0

Cause I don't think that they'd understand...

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