All Time Low
Released: 6th July 2009.
Maryland pop/punk band All Time Low are pretty much unknown in the UK, however their third offering "Nothing Personal" should change things, as it's a fine example of what they do best - upbeat, American Pie-style songs packed with catchy hooks and one liner lyrics.
From the opening 808 drum beats of first single "Weightless" to the closing bars of "Therapy", this album's two sides are shown perfectly - its attitude and its sensitivity. "Weightless" sounds not too far away from recent All-American Rejects and Weezer offerings until it suddenly implodes into the epic opener every album needs.
Full of bittersweet lyrics and irony that could teach Alanis Morissette a few things, this is showcased best on must-be single "Break Your Little Heart" with the album's key lyrics - "You were fake, I was great, nothing personal" - All Time Low at their classic best.
Whilst the album isn't the biggest of progressions from their previous offerings, especially when tracks such as "Damned If I Do Ya, Damned If I Don't" are ultimately sound-alikes of the best tracks from "So Wrong It's Right" - frustrating it can be for a fan, it is by no means a negative trait of the album. This is especially the case when tracks like album highlight "Too Much" show so much progress, both musically and lyrically for the band. The track's sensitivity and subtlety take this album from being a sub-standard "From Under The Cork Tree" to a brilliant trademark for the band, and the tale of regret and broken love documented by "Too Much" shows a mature side of the band that fans haven't yet seen.
Elsewhere, the album boasts aces such as "Walls" "Lost In Stereo" and sing-along favourite "Hello Brooklyn" and none disappoint, all prove that All Time Low maybe a force soon to be reckoned with.
"Stella" proves that the millionth song to compare the popular beverage to a girl can still be clever and witty, boasting lyrical gold such "You're only happy when I'm wasted - Stella won't you take me home" - and whilst it doesn't quite up to Jamie T's attempt with "Sheila" it easily eclipses Ida Maria's song of the same name.
Finally, the sweet ending of "Therapy" comes as a refreshing calmer moment to an otherwise hectic album, as it documents self reflection.
It may not be the most revolutionary or successful of albums, but "Nothing Personal" contains some of All Time Low's finest work - it shows progression where it is needed while it also remains faithful to the sound that won All Time Low it's fans. It should be the album that propells this band into the mainstream attention, but sadly it probably won't be.