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Tokyo Rose - New American Saint (Cover Artwork)

Tokyo Rose

Tokyo Rose: New American SaintNew American Saint (2005)
Sidecho Records

Reviewer Rating: 3.5
User Rating:


Contributed by: William_DavidWilliam_David
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Tokyo Rose seem to be switching from pop-punk to punk-pop on their newest release from SideCho, New American Saint, if the label even matters. What I mean by this is that where pop-punk would be defined as punk music that leans more towards the pop side, the new album from Tokyo Rose almost sounds l.
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Tokyo Rose seem to be switching from pop-punk to punk-pop on their newest release from SideCho, New American Saint, if the label even matters. What I mean by this is that where pop-punk would be defined as punk music that leans more towards the pop side, the new album from Tokyo Rose almost sounds like pop music with punk tendencies. While this is something that might not sound appealing to a punk audience, the album is fairly solid, and if nothing else, a very easy listen.

The quartet from Jersey released their first album on SideCho Records in 2003. Entitled Reinventing a Lost Art, the album was nothing revolutionary, but it was a solid start to their career. After being compared to a few of the bands they listen to, such as Saves the Day and Jimmy Eat World, Tokyo Rose seem to be taking more on this album from some of their other influences including Coldplay and U2.

I therefore suggest any hardcore punks stop reading this review now, and find out what else came out this week. However, for anyone with an open mind, and who doesn't feel cheap for humming along to catchy hooks and honing in on their emotional side, this record is definitely worth a listen.

Bassist Chris Poulsen has stated that he believes "every song [on the new album] stands on its own." This is a bold assertion, and a little overstated, but there are at least four tracks I could see making solid singles in the right hands, at the right time; which is an achievement for any album.

The album focuses heavily on the vocals of Ryan Dominguez, while the instrumentation creates a different kind of aura for the range of themes in their songs. The title track, "New American Saint," deals with what people are willing to give for fame, and how they forget their beginnings in the search for it. The album cover accordingly features two men and three women on pedestals, overlooking a depressing landscape.

Some may point this out as ironic, considering the heavy pop tendencies of the songs on this album (and the tendency of pop to be for nothing more than fame and fortune), however, Tokyo Rose has forged a sound that (while reverberating other acts) is truly their own. They seem confident in this sound, which doesn't hint they are "faking it."

I have two small complaints with this album. The first is that it's not anything that hasn't been done before. Their music is solid, but doesn't stray far from the beaten path. The second is the constant use of "you" in their lyrics. There is not one track, from "Spectacle" to "Meghan Again" (1-11), that isn't addressed lyrically to some unknown "you." Not that there is anything wrong with a song from that point of view, but I'd like to be told a third-person narrative once in a while, or a personal reflection, just to mix things up.

They have a knack for using popular phrases in their lyrics -- some, used as is, such as "skating on thin ice" -- and some, variations of idioms: "Because if life is the means, what's the end?" The lyrics have their ups and downs like everything else on the album, but in the end, they fit the style of their music.

Overall, it's a good album with some minor problems. If you enjoyed their first album, New American Saint is worth checking out despite a slight change in sound. For anyone that's unsure, they have the first full album streaming on their website (tokyorosenj.com) as well as four new songs on Myspace, and five on purevolume; if you don't think it's worth your money, it is worth at least ten minutes of your time to check it out for free.

 

 
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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.
stricken (October 7, 2005)

never been impressed by these guys...

soulbleed (October 6, 2005)

i thought this was pretty boring. like three good songs, tops. their last one was better.

Anonymous (October 6, 2005)

kudos

-sirens

Anonymous (October 5, 2005)

This rating is for the excellent review.

William_David (October 5, 2005)

Yeah, that would be the easy way to say that. I like making my own terms though instead of using buzz words.

lushj (October 5, 2005)

"... where pop-punk would be defined as punk music that leans more towards the pop side, the new album from Tokyo Rose almost sounds like pop music with punk tendencies."

So is this power pop?

OverDefined (October 5, 2005)

Tom's not in the band anymore.

Anonymous (October 5, 2005)

this score is for anonymous posters because in all honesty, who gives a shit?

i can't commit all the way....-wehavecomeforyourchildren

wehavecomeforyourchildren (October 5, 2005)

score if for a new kind of american saint. anybody remember that band?

they had the liner notes spoofing through being cool and on the last two pages....looking for "dave" or whatever the kid in NKoAS's name was and then instead of finding him with a girl on his shoulder, he was found sucking a kid's dick.

like i said, score is for new kind of american saint. tokyo rose...well they can go suck a dick.

William_David (October 4, 2005)

Steve Jones, I never know what to think of you. Very nice on telling them off on this one though. As far as the phone numbers thing, I don't know how well that would work out, but yes, the anonymous posters are rather annoying.

GreenVandal (October 4, 2005)

The next level of punknews commitment. Posting your phone number so that when you talk smack, the people come after you. Take that anonymous posters.

This is genius.

stevejonestherealbones (October 4, 2005)

how is he supposed to call you?

both you fuckers are morons

- jones the bones

- stevejones8770@yahoo.com

Anonymous (October 4, 2005)

Actually I read this site every day. If you got a problem with me why don't you give me a call? I'd love to know who you are.

Anonymous (October 4, 2005)

The drummer is one of the biggest douches I have ever met in my life. Fuck you tom. (i know he wont see this, but on the off chance....)

benz (October 4, 2005)

My friend told me to go to this bands website once at www.tokyorose.com

that was a mistake.

love, Benz

AlmostPunkEnough (October 4, 2005)

this is some pretty good stuff overall. i liked 'Reinventing a Lost Art' too. nothing original or whatever, but it's not whiny, it's not completely about girls or cutting your wrists, and it's fucking catchy. these guys have potential to be really good one day.

also, good one jones, did you spend all night with Miss Michigan thinking that up?

and i think Japanese chicks are the hottest asians.

Anonymous (October 4, 2005)

japanese girls = the hotness. I love the yellow cabs.

stevejonestherealbones (October 4, 2005)

whats next? a review of something equally as gay?!!??!?!?!?!?

HA! good one jones!

- jones the bones

- stevejones8770@yahoo.com

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