"Living Well Is the Best Revenge" (MCA/Drive-Thru)

Reviewed by R. Scott Bolton

There are way too many bands out there that sound just like Blink 182. The reason for this, of course, is that Blink 182 is hugely successful and the myopic record companies see one hit band and immediately start looking for and signing their clones. We've come up with a term for this kind of rock'n'roll. We call it "spongerock." 

For the first few seconds of Midtown's "Living Well Is Your Best Revenge," you will probably think, "Great. Yet another Blink 182 clone." Fortunately, however, Midtown is a little more than that.

Sure, they play that crunchy pop punk that Blink 182 popularized. There's no denying that Midtown probably got a record contract because Blink 182 was so popular and there's a resemblance to their sounds. What sets Midtown apart from the other Blink clones, however, is a strong guitar-driven sound, better than average songwriting, and a healthy dose of charisma and energy that stands out in their recording. This is especially notable on Track 9, "A Faulty Foundation," which rocks like the dickens.

If you're looking for anything new or fresh here, however, you're out of luck. Despite the band's undeniable talent, they aren't breaking any new ground here. Then again, if they were, they probably wouldn't have got signed in the first place.

Midtown: Gabe Saporta - vocals, bass; Heath Saraceno - vocals, guitar; Rob Hitt - drums, backing vocals; Tyler Rann - vocals, guitar.

For more information, check out http://www.midtownrock.com

Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Copyright 2002 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 07 Aug 2023 20:46:38 -0400.