The Pains of Being Pure at Heart - Belong (Cover Artwork)

The Pains of Being Pure at Heart

The Pains of Being Pure at Heart: BelongBelong (2011)

Reviewer Rating: 2
User Rating:

Contributed by: JeloneJelone
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While they should be applauded for developing beyond their fuzzy debut, the Pains of Being Pure at Heart seem to have experienced some growing pains on their second full-length, Belong. While early '90s alternative seems to have done wonders for their sonic palette, clumsy lyrics ultimately undo the.
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While they should be applauded for developing beyond their fuzzy debut, the Pains of Being Pure at Heart seem to have experienced some growing pains on their second full-length, Belong. While early '90s alternative seems to have done wonders for their sonic palette, clumsy lyrics ultimately undo the record.

Give the band credit for consistency, though. Belong is steadfast in its goth attitude–line after line talks about wanting to die, languishing in bed and not belonging anywhere. This isn't too far off from The Head on the Door in terms of sound and sentiment, but the whole thing comes off as dull and underwhelming. Blame the lack of variation or the slower tempos, but what once seemed cute and twee on The Pains of Being Pure at Heart gets annoying on Belong.

Some of these lines are just obnoxious: "My Terrible Friend" might unload the biggest clunker of the bunch with "What did you take? 'Cause that's what I'll take / And I can't take it without you." I can only justify the opening lines to "Strange" ("When everyone was doing drugs / We were just doing love") by assuming the band was high when they wrote them, but that can't be right. There's just a lack of eloquence, not to mention rhyme scheme diversity, at play here.

Still, the band at least gets the music right. It's startling how closely Belong approximates the guitar tone of Smashing Pumpkins' Siamese Dream at times, but then, Alan Moulder mixed both albums. The bulk of the record is still in an '80s template, but the band seems less indebted to early My Bloody Valentine now.

The best and worst thing I could say about Belong is that any of its songs would fit in perfectly with the Pretty in Pink soundtrack. It's steadfast in its juvenile depression, but it lacks the Cure's manic depths or the Psychedelic Furs' sleazy come-ons. It's the kind of album you need to hear in your teens and need to sell in your twenties.


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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
greg0rb (April 19, 2011)

Just got this and only have given it a couple spins, and the vocals seem to be mixed even lower than on the s/t so I haven't noticed the lyrics yet. Love the music and production though.

darbytownsend (April 18, 2011)

definitely has it's moments. the first three tracks are actually very good. the rest of the album is where i agree with the review.

holy_balls (April 17, 2011)

it was alright. not as good as their first, but i still enjoy it. i wouldn't rate it a 2 though.

realgone (April 17, 2011)

Really like this second album from PoBPaH!

Read my full review here: http://realgonerocks.blogspot.com/2011/04/pains-of-being-pure-at- heart-belong.html

mikexdude (April 17, 2011)

Be nice...

Just kidding, I feel the exact same way.

RedElephant (April 16, 2011)

tried it.. really just not all that good.

R3vengeTherapy (April 16, 2011)

This review is ridiculous, give me a break. You give it two stars because you hate the lyrics? Lyrics aren't everything, and there's so much worse out there. It's not like the first record was a life-changing lyrical masterpiece.

Really good record, better than the first LP.

oldpunkerforever (April 16, 2011)

Brilliant pop record, if you took the cure and tossed in some Jesus and Mary chain w a touch of slowdive= this. Good stuff-oldpunker-

accidentprone88 (April 16, 2011)

Their self-titled is better, but I still dig this. The lyrics are cheesy, sure, but I don't think it's the quite the deal breaker the review makes it seem.

palpitations101 (April 15, 2011)

Listening to this is like walking home when you're too stoned, but in that burnt-out tired way where it takes forever to put one foot in front of the other.

danperrone (April 15, 2011)

i never listened to this band because their name is dumb, but i gave this a shot and really enjoy it. at least it wasn't given another 8/10.

Blackjaw_ (April 15, 2011)

Boring. Silversun Pickups do this a million times better.

eatdogs (April 15, 2011)

yeah, the reviews for lp2 are pretty split. i still haven't given this a listen yet, but i'm still intrigued since i loved their debut...

TSOL (April 15, 2011)

I loved this release. Haven't really paid attention to the lyrics but to me lyrics don't take much away from this genre of music, if they are in fact lacking.

i-type-poorly (April 15, 2011)

This album sounds like a John Hughes film. Vapid unrealistic young love nonsense. s/t was great, but I was sick of this one after three songs.

alpod4 (April 15, 2011)

that's pretty harsh. i haven't sat down too much with this album yet, and it hasn't hit me as hard as the s/t did, but it's definitely better than 2/5. "heart in your heartbreak" is such a good track

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