Would it kill you’… to listen?

By Cecily Arambula

Indie-pop band Hellogoodbye released their lyrically and
musically charming sophomore album “Would it Kill You?” today,
showcasing the band’s recent musical maturity.

Recorded in frontman Forrest Kline’s garage and released on the
band’s own record label, Wasted Summer Records, “Would it Kill
You?” arrives four years after the release of their 2006 debut
album “Zombies! Aliens! Vampires! Dinosaurs!”

Although “Would it Kill You?” features some of the same
qualities of the band’s original sound ” quirky electro-pop ” it
may not be what fans have anticipated.

This album portrays a more musically developed effort than the
band’s auto-tune infused and lyrically underdeveloped debut album.

Despite parting ways with his old record label, and changing
band members, it is obvious Kline has blossomed as a song-writer
over the past four years.

“Would it Kill You?” presents listeners with track after track
of lyrically-elaborate, lively songs that echo a cross between the
vivacious music of Panic! At the Disco and indie feel of Sondre
Lerche.

Hellogoodbye’s progression as a band is in part due to its new
members Mike Nielsen, Travis Head, Joseph Marro and Andrew
Richards.

With its metaphorically-charged lyrics, “When We First Met,” the
first single off “Would it Kill You?” sweetly compares the amount
of a couple’s love to the length of their hair:

“All I see is where our days repeat/and our love goes on as our
hair grows long.”

Accompanied by backup vocals, Kline’s poetic lyrics give
listeners much more than just a captivating melody and an earful of
catchy full instrumentation: fans get a sneak peak at
Hellogoodbye’s new, grown-up sound.

The first track of the album, “Find Something to do,” sets a
tone for the rest of “Would it Kill You?” with the song’s peppy
mood and heavy instrumentation.

“Betrayed by Bones,” the album’s fourth track, is a new and much
better version of a song previously released on Hellogoodbye’s
“Ukulele Recordings” EP, which features more of Kline’s clever
lyrics:

“How could it be/that tendons bound to the bones within my feet
were bound to believe/that they should move themselves to up and
leave?”

Kline’s imaginative lyrics alone make “Would it Kill You?” a
more pleasurable experience, not to mention the admirable quality
of music.

Songs such as, “I Never Can Relax” and “Coppertone,” beautifully
feature orchestration, complimenting Kline’s vocals, reminiscent of
a big band sound but with an indie feel.

“The Thoughts That Give Me the Creeps” can be considered a more
grown-up version of the band’s “Oh, It is Love,” released on
“Zombies! Aliens! Vampires! Dinosaurs!”

On the title track, Kline sings of the frustration over love to
a fast-paced, upbeat tune:

“Would it kill you just to let it all work out?/Trying so hard
just to break it down/All summer I didn’t see it ’til just now”
sings Kline in the chorus of the song.

Even when the lyrics are not joyful in nature, Hellogoodbye has
found a way to make every song sound cheerful to its audience.

The last track, “Something You Misplaced,” nicely incorporates
every enjoyable quality on the entire album, from the creative and
heartfelt lyrics to the music.

On “Would it Kill You?,” Hellogoodbye shows off their musical
growth, giving listeners tracks with more substance and maturity;
something that may not have been expected.

Rating 4.5/5

Would it kill you

Photo courtesy of Big Hassle

Would it kill you’… to listen?

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