Title: Don’t Panic
Artist: All Time Low (100% recommendable)
Release date: 9th October, 2012
Label: Hopeless Records
Don’t Panic is the 5th and newest studio album by American band All Time Low, it is so far it’s most energetic and, in my opinion, best record. After the slight fiasco and disappointment to some fans
(not me) that was their previous album Dirty Work, in which the songs were just attempts to be on the radio, the band has returned to its original style. Their starting style is not the only thing they’ve come back to, but also to their home label, Hopeless Records, after leaving major label Interscope. This, in my humble opinion, was just the right thing to do, All Time Low aren’t one of those bands that write commercial songs to be played on the radio and work with such huge label as Interscope is.
‘The Reckless and The Brave’ is the first song of the album and also the first single, released as a free download on the 1st of June. The best word to describe this song is anthem, it’s the anthem of, well, the reckless and the brave
(well done, captain obvious). It’s energetic as the rest of the album and although it is punk rock it is not difficult to catch glimpses of electronic sounds, which means that even if ATL’s style is from the 90’s they can easily add new sounds to their music without making it sound too pop-ish.
‘Backseat Serenade‘ is the second song off the album, featuring Cassade
flawless Pope, also known as the former singer of pop-punk band Hey Monday, now on hiatus due to her pursue of a successful solo career. The collaboration of Cassadee makes this song perfect, I really like how her and Alex’s voice blend together in the vibrant and catchy chorus.
The third song of the album is titled ‘If These Sheets Were States’, it is basically a long-distance relationship love song. Although
thank God it is not too corny. I like it when bands are able to talk about love and sweet things (i.e.: “Collisions of a finer love, I’d kill for one more way / To tell you how you make me better every day”) and not make me puke. You can really tell how uncommercial they are, most popular artists’ love songs sound all the same.
‘Somewhere in Neverland’ is the fourth song of the album and also the third single of this album, released on the 18th of September, 2012. The song, as you have probably guessed is Peter Pan-themed. It talks about how everything changes when you grow up, “Say goodbye to the halls and the classes / Say hello to a job and the taxes / The weekends with old friends, spilling into 9 to 5 routine”. It’s also another love song that isn’t about love (I can’t really explain myself, sorry). “Wendy” is now added to the list of names on ATL songs (Maria, Jasey Rae, Holly, etc.). The fact that this song is related to Peter Pan clearly shows that Alex Gaskarth is
mentally 10 years old still a kid inside.
‘So Long Soldier’, fifth song, is probably my favourite song in the album that isn’t a single. Not only does the rhythm sound extremely good but the lyrics are amazing. Anyone that knows a bit about the band will know that this song tells the story of lead singer Alex Gaskarth, who moved to the USA when he was young (“Back in ’95 / A little boy from just outside of London / Took a fated trip across the ocean”), then it talks about how the young members of the band dreamed of becoming famous and went on their first tour (Late 2005 / The boy’s got plans as crazy as his friends / They take their chances driving West alone / Give ’em six more years, and see what time will do for hopeless dreamers / Singing wishes to their broken stereo). The best line of this whole song is, in my opinion, “And come down to voice a generation” because ATL has come so far and they’ve achieved so many things that anyone would be proud to call themselves a fan.
There is a curious fact about the sixth song, titled ‘The Irony of Choking on a Lifesaver’ and it is that Alex once nicknamed his weenie “lifesaver” in an interview. I see what you did there, Mr. Gaskarth. Anyway, this is one of my favourite songs off the album. It has this energetic vibe and its lyrics are simply amazing. I really like how it directly starts with “stop f***ing around with my emotions” and then the music kicks in again. Also, I like “you’re the snake hidden in my daffodils when I’m picking flowers” even though I can’t quite picture All Time Low in a field just like “Aw picking flowers so nice yiss nice ◕‿◕”.
The seventh song is titled ‘To Live and Let Go’, it is a song full of rhythm changes as well as timing changes, it’s almost as if it was small pieces of songs all put together with the same lyrics.
‘Outlines’ is the eighth song on the album, before writing this I wasn’t planning on talking too much about this song but I realised I should point out the fact that it wasn’t entirely written by Alex Gaskarth (singer of the band and major ovary-destroyer). Outlines was co-written by Patrick Stump (ex-singer of Fall Out Boy and no longer chubby), it made me so happy to know that Patrick and All Time Low have worked together and at least know each other – they probably get along well and are friends. *fangirls* Jason Vena, from the band Acceptance also sings on this track.
‘For Baltimore’ is the tenth song off the album and also the first single, released the 28th of August. The song is sort of a tribute to the city where Rian Dawson (also known as ‘ray’, ‘brian’ and ‘rain’) and Zack Merrick (bassist and official t-shirt hater) are from. Jack Barakat (guitaris) is from Lebanon, as well as babies; and Alex is, as mentioned before, from “outside London” (Essex, to be precise).
I’m pretty much too lazy to talk about the rest of the album (“Thanks To You”, “Paint You Wings” and “So Long, and Thanks For All The Booze”) all songs are more or less alike: energetic pop-punk songs with catchy choruses and nice riffs.