Album review

Good Charlotte :
The Young And The Hopeless

Epic / Daylight

Good Charlotte : The Young And The HopelessIt's like a scratched record - you remember those don't you? Once again, the latest greatest punk noise hurtles out of the good old US of A with all the punker kids bitching about authenticity and punk cred. It's as if the actual music is deemed to be secondary to the mythical 'punk ethic'. The irony is in there if you look hard enough . . .

After already selling a whole pile of CDs in the States, Good Charlotte finally launch their UK offensive in March, heralded by the release of the annoyingly catchy single, Lifestyles Of The Rich & Famous. Whichever way you listen to it, it's a killer tune; informed by likes of NOFX and Green Day, with the radio friendly edge of Bowling For Soup and New Found Glory. But there's more: The Anthem proves that Good Charlotte have more than one Stone Cold Stunner, and it pushes all the right buttons, culminating in its "Another loser anthem, whoa ohh!" refrain.
    As you learn to live with The Young And The Hopeless, it becomes increasingly apparent that Good Charlotte really know how to sink the pop hooks into their punk songs. Girls & Boys hits the chorus inside 30 seconds, and Emotionless is a saccharine ballad that will open the doors that Lifestyles Of The Rich & Famous can't.

"These critics and these trust fund kids try to tell me what punk is, but when I see them on the street they got nothing to say." The Young And The Hopeless' title track spawned those words, and you can't say fairer than that. If you want to rally against fake punk, Busted have got an album out. I'd be willing to bet good money that it isn't as good as this one.

:: Rowan Shaeffer

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