Brooke Cochrane Opinion Editor
The prominent pop-rock band, 5 Seconds of Summer, has been silent for the past two and a half years. After their 2016 world tour “Sounds Live Feels Live,” they fell off the grid. Then, suddenly, in Feb. 2018, they dropped a single titled “Want You Back” which features in their new album “Youngblood.” The album dropped one week earlier than anticipated on June 15, and topped the charts for weeks. The highly awaited album definitely matched up to expectations. It is full of anguish and heartbreak; the songs radiate the emotions the band was feeling.
In recent interviews, the bassist of the band, Calum Hood, explained the feelings behind a lot of the songs. He described that the lead singer, Luke Hemmings, and drummer, Ashton Irwin, were the emotion behind a lot of the lyrics contained in the album. “I feel like Ashton and Luke were the main drivers because they had the hurt, they had the love, and they had the vulnerability,” Hood expressed to L’Officiel, an online magazine.
The second single released before the album dropped in June, “Youngblood,” managed to stay in the number one slot for a long period of time. The band picked a great song to start off the album. Following “Youngblood,” the teenage pop band dropped “Want You Back.” When this song first came out, it gave fans a peak at the band’s new sound. Their first two albums sound more punk-rock/pop. “Youngblood” incorporates modern music and a little bit of rock. It is the new style for 5 Seconds of Summer and definitely suits them!
The next song, “Lie to Me” is a fan favorite, and my personal favorite. This is one of the many songs in the album that conveys the intense feelings of heartbreak the band members were going through when it was written. “Valentine” is the next song on the album. In a video that the band released where they talked about each song, they described “Valentine” as being very romantic and the perfect song for Valentine’s Day.
Picking up the beat a little bit, “Talk Fast” is up next on the album. This transmits the feeling of an 80’s pop song; it is very different than any other track on the album. After that is “Moving Along,” another fantastic song. It is an upbeat song about the aftermath of a relationship. “If Walls Could Talk” follows and it is a total bop. The different beats mixed with the strum of deep guitar sends chills down your spine! “Better Man” is about becoming a better person when you surround yourself with the right people. “More” is an upbeat rock song that uses guitars that makes you want to sing along right away. The power of the vocals blends well with the instruments.
My absolute favorite song on the album is called “Why Won’t You Love Me.” This song feels like it reaches its hand in your chest and rips your heart right out. It is a bit deceiving because of its cheerful and happy tone. However, the lyrics are worth paying close attention to because they are quite beautiful and profound. “Woke Up In Japan” is a song about the band’s experiences visiting Japan for the first time and it describes what they saw and felt. “Empty Wallets” is the anthem of people who constantly spend money on things and then complain about not having any money. It is a fun song to listen to when you need to smile. “Ghost Of You” is probably the saddest song on the entire album. It is about two people who live in a house together and one of them passes away. The melody of the song sounds like Luke Hemmings, the lead singer, is almost crying while performing. It tells the story of the widow and how they pretend to dance around their house with the ghost of their loved one.
“Monster Among Men” is probably the most underrated song on the album. It starts off with an upbeat tempo and then, when the chorus comes, it slows down with a more pop-sounding beat. “Meet You There” is a great pop song that ties in the sound of guitars and a lot of bass. This is also the name they chose for their world tour. The final song on the album is called “Babylon.” This song, sung entirely by the bass player, Calum Hood, reminds me almost of dubstep except with guitars. This is another one of the best songs on the album.
“Youngblood” is 5 Seconds of Summer’s third debut album and it is definitely the strongest one of the three. This is the album where they found themselves and their sound. I will not be surprised if this album gets nominated and wins album on the year at the 2019 Grammy Awards.