Twitter Facebook
  Reviews | Gig Listings
Something for the Rest of Us
Goo Goo Dolls Something for the Rest of Us
Released 27 August 2010

Tim Palmer, Butch Vig,
John Fields, Goo Goo Dolls
Label Warner Bros.
Length 48:18
Genre Rock
Website www.googoodolls.com

Little known fact about the Goo Goo Dolls, when they released the global phenomenon that was 'Iris' it didn't even make it into the Irish top 40. Obviously the guys at Warner Bros. knew they had a smash hit on their hands -the single had been a number one state side- and they re-released it. It went on to spend thirty-three weeks in the Irish single charts, making it the thirteenth biggest selling single of all time in this little country. Makes you wonder how much quality music actually slips through the cracks every year. Anyway you're probably wondering how I actually knew that 'interesting fact' about the Goo Goo Dolls. Well I'm not ashamed to say I was once a fan of the band and when Something for the Rest of Us found its way to the Highbrowse.ie offices I couldn't help myself, I had to review it.

Since the success of Dizzy Up The Girl (1998) –in no small part helped along by the successful lead single– the Goos have failed to maintain mainstream success on this side of the Atlantic. The success of that album marked a move from their earlier punk-rock, grunge sound to a more polished pop-rock sound that the band embraced further with every subsequent release. Over ten years on and the Goos latest release Something for the Rest of Us epitomises that direction choice and it doesn't look like the band has any intention of returning to their roots. More’s the pity.

It's seems John Rzeznik has become a ballad making machine and whereas on previous records the inclusion of one or two slow tempo love songs was a welcome addition, unfortunately if you populate an entire album with them the results are the equivalent of a self induced coma. Really it's hard to find where one track begins and another ends. Bizarrely it takes the Goos bassist Robby Takac to break the monotony as he takes lead vocals on two of the albums thirteen tracks. Why is this bizzare? Well anyone familiar with the band will know usually lead vocals are split between both Rzeznik and Takac, sadly nearly always resulting in poor quality on Takac's part. Usually the beginning of a Takac track results in a quick push of the 'next' button. To put it simply Rzeznik's got a great voice, Takac should stick to the backing vocals. I guess it's a testament to the bands friendship and indifference to outside pressures, that they've always been happy enough to let Takac sing his songs.

In saying all this there are some highlights here, the title track in particular is well worth a listen and there are moments on the record when Rzeznik reminds you how good a musician he is. Ultimately though, like most Goo Goo Dolls releases of the past decade, the album’s a disappointment. Check out Superstar Car Wash (1993) or A Boy Named Goo (1995) to hear these guys at their best.

- David Prendergast