Review Summary: Blink fans from the 90's might wake up with morningwood.
Blink-182 is well known across North America as a popular punk sensation that made their way to the top during the 90′s. Over the course of their early albums, Dude Ranch through Take Off You Pants and Jacket, Blink perfected a sound known best as “pop-punk”. The last release the trio made before disbanding found Blink turning in a new direction. They had developed into what some will argue as a more “mature” sound. Their new sound was fuller, and fleshed out with more ambient production. Their new sound was explored further by each member’s side project after Blink parted ways in the mid 2000′s. After each member went on to pursue small side careers, Blink reunited for an album and tour in 2011 brandishing the newer Blink sound they had developed before splitting.
This is where Future Idiots come in. They are a Swedish “pop-punk” band who sound very similar to the early Blink-182. After only a few official releases, Future Idiots felt inspired to tribute their most important musical influence by releasing an all-Blink-182 cover album. The album by Future Idiots is called Neighborhoods & Morningwoods, and it covers every song from the most recent Blink-182 release Neighborhoods. FI’s release is unique because it caters to Blink fans who appreciate the band’s early days as a “pop-punk” group. Future Idiots have created an album for anyone who prefers the old Blink-182 sound, and would like to hear Blink’s album Neighborhoods as if it were produced a decade ago. If you were a fan of Blink-182′s sound back in the late 90′s or early 2000′s, and find yourself grumbling that Blink’s sound has changed too much, you must listen to this!
Every aspect of this album is a throwback to Blink’s early days. The production, instruments, and vocals are styled around what the album (“should”) would have sounded like if Blink had released it in their early days. FI made changes to instrumental rhythms, song structures, and vocal melodies. The changes are important for the sake of recreating the dynamics of classic Blink albums such as Enema of the State. Neighborhoods & Morningwoods sounds like a completely different album than Blink’s original work. I "morningwoodn’t" say either version of this album is better, but I think Future Idiots’ decision is a clever, ingenious move, that will satisfy the Blink fans who were marginalized by the group’s evolution. Plain and simple, it’s a pop-punk album that is worth a spin.
This album has a few shortcomings, some related to the original flaws in Blink's material, some related to the translation of the songs. Some of the tracks simply don't do the original songs justice. It might lose its appeal faster for someone who listened to Blink's version extensively. On the other hand, it might be a tasty twist on some great material that was released last year.