The Audition

Champion

Written by: TL on 22/04/2008 23:46:38

Yeah yeah yeah, okay okay, I admit it, The Audition\'s sophomore album \"Champion\" has been out for quite a while now, and yes, it has been one of those albums that have me dragging my feet for a while before finally forcing myself to do the review.

You see I\'ve never been an unconditional fan of this band. Sure I liked \"Approach The Bench\" and \"The Ultimate Cover-Up\" - both tracks showcasing a band\'s ability to focus fully on writing straightforward quality rock songs. That being said, the debut album seemed to lack consistency, and in all honesty I always thought you\'d be better off just giving The Academy Is\' \"Almost Here\" another spin instead. So I guess \"Champion\" was to be The Audition\'s chance to grow into a more well-rounded band and prove that they could stand out from the horde of commercial rock acts flooding the American scene these days - Too bad they failed.

I have to admit that after a handful of listens, Champion is not all bad, but for every semi-cool guitar riffs stuffed into it, there seems to also be a moment of downright bad taste or stupidity that will annoy any listener in his or her right mind. Almost every song on the record seems to have a key message going something like \"Oh baby, baby let me show you *insert metaphor for something intimate here*\" and I\'m actually tempted to start counting how many times the word \"baby\" get\'s used in the lyrics. Stylistically the band are mixing their poppunk up with some funky riffs and rhythms, not unlike what The Academy Is did on \"Santi\", and to be honest, it would probably work really well if it wasn\'t for the fact that most of the lyrics insult my intellect - And I\'m even binding my vocal obsession in order to leave it as a subjective matter, if Danny Stevens voice is something to praise or criticise.

In my opinion, the band would have been better off expanding in the direction they take on \"What Get\'s You Through The Night\", where they lay off the Don Juan-behaviour in favour of an attempt to blow some sincerity and emotion into the song. Apart from that there\'s simply too few moments where the songs really work, \"Ether\" and \"Make It Rain\" coming closest. In other places, they fall flat on their faces, seemingly not realising that they simply don\'t have enough charm to sell lines as stupid as \"Shut up and sing my song!\".

Summing things up, I guess you\'ve all understood that I don\'t really like Champion all that much, and truth be told, I\'m only strengthened in my opinion that anyone would be better off just listening to The Academy Is, a band that does just about the same things, only infinitely better. For The Audition, Champion was strike two - hopefully they\'ll do better on number three.

Download: What Get\'s You Through The Night, Make It Rain, Ether
For The Fans Of: The Academy Is, Cute Is What We Aim For, Fall Out Boy
Listen: myspace.com/theaudition

Release 22.01.2008
Victory Records

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