New Found Glory

From The Screen To Your Stereo Part II

Written by: PP on 03/10/2007 02:12:16

Doing covers has never been an unusual part of any band's career. Most bands tend to record a cover or two, whether its for a compilation or just as a bonus track at the end of one of their albums, but few do it like New Found Glory. In 2000, the band released an EP called "From The Screen To Your Stereo", which featured seven classic movie theme songs ranging from "My Heart Will Go On" to "I Don't Wanna Miss A Thing", all re-worked to sound exactly like the raw pop punk that New Found Glory was releasing at the time. Fast forward seven years onto to date, I've got a copy of "From The Screen To Your Stereo Part II" on my review list. That's right, year after year, the fans kept on requesting a new covers album, because the original was just so god damn good. Only this time around, it's a full length's worth of tracks, featuring 11 known and not-so-known movie theme songs.

Let it not be a secret that I really, really enjoyed the first EP. The band's ability to turn the originals (many of them pure pop) into a sound that was distinctly punk and distinctly New Found Glory was amazing. So it was little bit like an early christmas to hear what the band had to offer this time around.

After countless listens, my impression is still stuck on my initial impression of "not much". Although some genuine chart-topping hits are represented, only few of them actually sound any different from the originals. For instance, I wouldn't be able to tell a difference between Sixpence None The Richer's "Kiss Me" and the New Found Glory version. The same goes for The Cardigans' "Lovefool" and Lisa Loeb's "Stay (I Missed You)", aside from the slightly strengthened guitars of the latter. Essentially, these covers have the exact same problem as New Found Glory's last album "Coming Home"; the complete abscence of a punk element. What made the first EP so great was that the songs sounded unmistakably different from the originals, they were fast-paced and more energetic, and they actually sounded like covers and not attempts at cloning the original song note by note, which is how it sounds like on the majority of Part II.

The Goo Goo Dolls cover "Iris" is a whole another story. Although it largely sounds like the original song, it's slightly faster and Jordan's chorus voice is contrasted well by Cartel's Will Pugh who is handling the lower range verse vocals, and wupti, the song works immediately. The same goes for the When In Rome cover "The Promise", which is pretty much the only track that has been punked up enough to allow me to call it melodic pop punk. Given that these two tracks are clearly the best ones on the album, someone should sit down with the band and tell them to ditch the ridiculously poppy direction they have been moving towards as of late. Hopefully before they start writing for their upcoming 2008 album.

My last criticism is geared towards the song selection. Many of the songs are seriously retarded choices for a covers album, not only because they aren't that good songs to start out with, but also because they allow for minimal interpretation and re-arrangement by the band, which inevitably has lead into the problem mentioned in the second paragraph - the songs just don't sound like passionate New Found Glory songs. I'm sure we can all agree that there is little point in re-recording songs by other artists without adding a touch of individuality onto them.

Overall, "From The Screen To Your Stereo Part II" is just like "Coming Home" for me. It just doesn't sound like the New Found Glory that I grew up with for the better part of the last 10 years. Like their last album, "Part II" just doesn't have enough good songs on it to warrant for a review much higher than an average grade. I can't say this one makes me excited for next summer, when they are tentatively set to release their next full length album.

6

Download: Iris, The Promise
For the fans of: Pop music covers
Listen: Myspace

Release date 18.09.2007
Drive-Thru Records

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