The Good: Contains a perfect song
The Bad: Well, most of the rest is garbage, Horrible instrumentals, Lyrically unimpressive
The Basics: Don't buy Dizzy Up The Girl; it isn't worth your time or money even for the three good songs!
You don't get a better hook to buy an album than the perfect song. Those who know my reviews know I'm not one to toss around the word "perfect." A perfect song is a rare thing. Dizzy Up The Girl has the perfect song and it was the first one released from the album (and on the City Of Angels soundtrack), "Iris." "Iris" is conceivably a song I could listen to forever because it's a perfect song, amazing on every level. It comes together.
The same may not be said for the album Dizzy Up the Girl. Outside of "Iris," "Broadway," and "Acoustic #3" the album is lyrically insipid, musically uninspired. The label on the Goo Goo Dolls is that they're the garage band that made it big. If Dizzy Up The Girl is any indication, they should have stayed in the garage.
For the most part, the vocal range is limited, the instrumentals are repetitive and unimaginative and the album is a huge letdown after such a great song as "Iris." The lead singer, Jonny Reznick never steps out vocally, so all of the songs are set in the same musical range. As a result, there's a largely homogeneous sound to the album that, instead of sounding cohesive or defining the group, sounds more limited. That is that the way Reznick makes his voice soar on "Iris," rock on "Broadway" and whispers through "Acoustic #3," one would think he could push himself more and none of the other songs on the album expand on the range that is defined by those three songs. In fact, all of the other songs are trapped in the same tonal range as "Broadway."
The instruments are almost exclusively guitar, bass and drums, the sound of which is unrefined. The Goo Goo Dolls make no attempts to step outside the whole garage sound which is less sophisticated than it could be. The decent lyrics of the few songs that have a fine message are often overshadowed by the banality of the same sounds over and over again, the same instruments making the same scratchy music. Unlike a group like Matchbox Twenty that mixes their sound up by putting in more strings or even using a french horn or such, the Goo Goo Dolls do not have that amount of musical imagination to do even that.
While "Iris" is grand and sweeping, evocative and "Acoustic #3" is quiet and sad, the other tracks try to stay more in the harder rock tradition and of them, only "Broadway" has a decent tune and sound. While the lyrics to one or two of the other songs might have been decent on the page, they do not translate well to music, as the guitars drown out the raspy voices of the lead and back-up singers.
The songs evoke no empathy, no real understanding of anything deeper and aren't even particularly interesting outside the three tracks listed above. One may only hope that if the band continues to release such uninteresting works that the populace will, well, lose interest.
The only strong tracks are "Iris," "Broadway," and "Acoustic #3" every other song is so far inferior and so, well, bad as to make this album not worth buying. Even used. A better investment would be the single "Iris" or a greatest hits type album if the band ever gets that far. If they do not, I would not be surprised given the lack of imagination illustrated by this album.
For other rock albums, please visit my reviews of:
Mad Season By Matchbox Twenty - Matchbox Twenty
Greatest Hits - Red Hot Chili Peppers
Forty Licks - The Rolling Stones
For other music reviews, please check out my index page on the subject by clicking here!
© 2011, 2003 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.
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