LFO is a perfect summertime album. Three young men who sing about girls, girls, girls, and more girls in light, breezy pop tunes that can be charming. Unfortunately, while their own productions shine, the songs made by the really overworked boyband factory people drag this album down to being “Just Another Boyband Thing”.
Indeed, their own songs are the best. Summer Girls – overplayed to the point of irritation – is a breezy fun tune of sun and fun with girls, if one could overlook Rich Cronin’s irritating “I’m having an orgasm!” gasping raps. West Side Story is a poppy chewing gum fun, while I Will Show You Mine fogs up my spectacles with its naughty lyrics. But the cream of the crop is definitely Girl on TV, a perfect whimsical tune about crushes on a TV star. Devin Lima’s raspy vocals, coupled with Brad Fischetti’s and Mr Cronin’s smooth harmonies, bring to mind sunshine, daydreams, and laughter. I especially adore the twinkly piano bits and that great guitar riffs, and the catchy chorus.
Let’s face it, anyone who drops Scoody Doo, New Kids on the Block, fashion labels, West Side Story, and samples reggae riffs while ruefully admitting that they are “at risk of sounding cheesy” is definitely A-OK.
But things go wrong when they rope in every crappy music makers from the pest Diane Warren to the Backstreet Boys people to pump in the obligatory ballads and crappy throwaway tunes. Cross My Heart, Forever, and Your Heart Is Safe with Me all give me the creeps. The only non-LFO produced song that works wonder is Reason Why, a charming song about a boy who refuses to admit that his relationship with a girlfriend is over.
Sure, LFO is a great album to listen to when one is in the bubble bath and dreaming of being young again. It’s like a nice vicarious trip into a world where nothing matters but now and the opposite sex. But don’t expect anything deep or insightful. And boys, never let anyone touch your music ever.