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Every Avenue - Picture Perfect (Album Review)

Saturday, 04 September 2010 Written by Jacob Mier
Every Avenue - Picture Perfect (Album Review)

Easily accessible melodies, classic hooks and the ever-present subject of young love make "Picture Perfect", the third studio album from Marysville, Michigan pop punk outfit Every Avenue, the ideal i-Pod filler for teenage girls everywhere.

While many of the records are undeniably well-structured in compliance with the conventional pop-rock format, stylistically much seems heavily borrowed from bands like All Time Low and The Maine - it's pretty hot right now amongst its aforementioned target audience, but early noughties skate-pop revival is not this writer's cup of tea.

ImageFor all "Picture Perfect"'s slick, polished pop muscle, there is no substantial invention or originality on offer from frontman David Ryan Strauchman and co. There are some nice touches in the production of tracks such as the title track, "Finish What You Started" and opener "For Always, Forever", courtesy of the record's producer Mitch Allan, that add extra texture and layering to the songs, but "Happy The Hard Way", "Tell Me I'm A Wreck" and most of the album besides have little effect on the listener other than that of deja vu - many of the melodies seem too reminiscent of the bands I used to watch on Kerrang! at the age of 9.

Instrumentally, the album is hardly innovative - the classic thick, palm-muted chugging of guitars through the verse building up to a chorus of bland and blatant distorted chord progressions. While guitarists Jimmie Deeghan and Joshua Randall are given little freedom within the restrictions of the precision pop structures that characterize the record, drummer Dennis Wilson deserves credit for his metronomic guidance of the ensemble through the often (pleasantly) surprising complicatedly-structured songs.

Indeed, while "Girl Like That" stops and starts too only nauseating effect, elsewhere the structures of the tracks are impressive. "Saying Goodbye" is possibly the least imaginative track on the list, but there is ultimately bound to be a future for any band right now that can glue pseudo-heavy guitar riffs with cheaply emotive lyrics and those painful "heartfelt" skate-rock vocal lines to slightly memorable chorus melodies. And, regrettably, it looks as though Every Avenue have mastered that formula for success with "Picture Perfect".

It does little to capture the imagination, but overall the song-structuring is interesting at times and the precise musicianship is at least commendable for its bland accuracy. Above all "Picture Perfect" is a glossy, cleanly-produced borefest well-marketed at any female suckers for an easy melody that is cool enough not to be "mainstream" under the age of 16.

Stereoboard Rating: 5/10

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