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Album Review

Good Charlotte – Youth Authority

Good Charlotte - Youth Authority

You’d be forgiven for wondering if it is indeed 2003.

Label: MDDN
Released: 15th July 2016

Rating: ★★★

Good Charlotte’s ’40 oz. Dream’ chats about growing up on MTV, checking it’s not 2003, and punk rockers all being over 40 and coaching little league. That’s what comes with the good ol’ reunion: things change, people are that bit older, but really listeners still hope for that essence of their earlier band in some form with one eye going forward.

Their years away have seen them hanging out with other bands more, and their influence has rubbed off: their time with 5 Seconds of Summer has left obvious fingerprints throughout, where many songs catch your ear and you’ll go, “Huh, that sounds like Good Charlotte with tinges of…”

When Good Charlotte come through at full force, you’d be forgiven for wondering if it is indeed 2003, and revelling in every moment. They’ve still got that fire that was lit under the earlier albums that put them slap bang on the radar, but they’ve also made it feel massive. ‘Life Changes’ is the peak free-flowing fun of a GC album, where ‘Reason To Stay’ featuring Biffy Clyro’s Simon Neil changes pace, a solo acoustic on his part before the band come in crank it to arena levels. ‘Life Can’t Get Much Better’ is the low key sing along – they’ve kept one eye as they always do on the live show, and chucked loads in for that cause throughout.

‘Youth Authority’ is good, but it’s not mind-blowing; it’s Good Charlotte becoming sponge-like to others and their influence. Will you have a good time listening to the album? Most likely. Will it go down a storm live? Yes. Will you have a longing for that little something extra once it’s done? Probably. Heather McDaid