Yo bro! This 3OH!3 band is totally destroying music! How can people like ’em? They’re not even an actual “band”. They have absolutely no talent, yet their famous! What the hell? Yup 3OH!3, the Colorado-based electro-rap duo, have their share of haters but in a scene plastered with bands like Brokencyde, Millionaires and like 28 radio hits each month that have to do with *ahem* “gettin all up with that shorty on the dance floor”, is two dudes making some silly party music really the worst thing ever?
Don’t answer that question. It really doesn’t matter because frankly, 3OH!3 are walking on streets of gold (see what I did there?). What started off as a white suburban version of Spank Rock became something far more extreme. Every Warped Tour they go on, their fanbase of scene kids, ironic hipsters, biddies and kids who just love to dance gets bigger and more dedicated. It all peaked at the 2009 Warped, in the midst of “Don’t Trust Me” going Top 40; I was there, in a sea of neon and stutter shades. The band’s gang signs were up with pride as the crowd from one end to the other sang and danced in unison. It was ridiculous. It was silly. But it was awesome. Why? Well…
I was never really able to explain my admiration for 3OH!3 to the haters out there other than that it’s just really fun party music. But even that’s a weird reason, for me at least: I prefer Midtown over Cobra Starship anyday, I roll my eyes whenever someone raves about Jason DeRulo or Ke$ha and my party mix CDs consist of punk-pop, indie rock and alternative rap. I’m not into this whole dance party music scene that’s taking over and yet, I love 3OH!3.
My odd admiration for these dudes became a bit more justifiable once I heard Streets of Gold, their sophomore album. The beats are tighter, the choruses are catchier and the overall sound denounces any argument of how 3OH!3 may fall under the extremely unflattering tag, “crunkcore”. In fact, if you need to compare to their previous album Want, it’s more “Don’t Trust Me” and “Colorado Sunshine” and less “Holla Till You Pass Out” and “Chokechain”. There’s far more singing/sing-talking on the record which gives it some variety from the sing-a-long ready ballads “I’m Not the One” and “Streets of Gold” to the Smash Mouth-esque “I Know How to Say” to the apocalyptic electro-rock “Love 2012” to the poppy summer anthem “WeAre Young”. That being said, there’s still some of the atypical dirty electronic-heavy rap their known for. The hit/miss “House Party” is reminiscent of their early work with a hypnotic beat while “I Can Do Anything” boasts some of the better raps these guys have done.
Like Want, it’s all good harmless fun but this time around, it’s a little less trashy. There’s not as much WTF-inducing phrases and lyrically, it’s a vast improvement from their previous work (which honestly isn’t really saying much). That being said with all it’s improvements, this won’t change any of the naysayers’ minds. Don’t like 3OH!3, this album probably won’t convince you otherwise.
I mean let’s be honest, this isn’t the best album of the year. Heck, it won’t even make my top 10 but it’s a good summer album, a damn good summer album. In fact, many of the tracks on Streets of Gold will most definitely be played on your party playlists for months to come. So for those who even mildly liked their previous stuff, check this out. It’ll make you dance and sing like a fool but you’ll love every second of it. And for those who think 3OH!3 is the worst thing to come out of the music industry, go listen to that pop-punk band in your own form of ecstasy and let the kids dance in peace… oh and let me know when the new Taking Back Sunday album is coming out.
RIYL: Cobra Starship, Family Force 5, The Higher, anything AP.net hates
Best Tracks: “Streets of Gold”, “I Know How to Say”, “WeAre Young”, “I’m Not the One”, “I Can Do Anything”, “Double Vision”