Review : Cobra Starship - Hot Mess
AllmusicCobra Starship would likely be the first to agree if you were to call them a joke band. The goofball lyrics, the kitsch-en sink approach to the music, and the day-glo visual images they portray are the work of a band that doesn't take itself seriously at all. The only point of contention would be whether the joke is funny and worth telling repeatedly, or if it's an annoying one that may have been funny once but is now wearing itself thin. If you are in the latter camp, then Hot Mess will hold no appeal for you at all. The silly dance pop, lightweight emo pop, and generally irreverent approach to music will make you want to break the disc in half. On the other hand, if that list sounds good to you, then Hot Mess is just what you'll want to be spinning on hot summer nights, late-night dance parties, and girl/boy's nights out. That their sound includes healthy doses of cheerleader chants, glam rock shouts, corny synth lines (played on the most cheesy of all synths, the keytar), mindless dance beats, arena rock guitars, totally fake hip-hop poses, '80s pop rip-offs, and vocodered vocals makes it a near-perfect pop sound for the age of short attention spans, gossip girls, and guyliner, and sounds like exactly what the title promises. The songs that sound like pre-ordained radio hits like "Good Girls Go Bad" (which features the amazingly post-modern guest list of Gossip Girl's Leighton Meester on vocals, Lil Wayne producer Kevin Rudolf behind the board, and a co-write from pro songwriter/Am Idol judge Kara DioGaurdi), "Wet Hot American Summer" and "Move Like You Gonna Die" have all the spangles, club sweat, and ridiculous energy you'd expect, but this time out you can also hear a little bit of real emotion (on the heartbroken R&B jam "The World Will Never," or the seemingly heartfelt and melancholy "Fold Your Hands Child"), some earnestly sweet melodies (the chorus of "Living in the Sky with Diamonds"), and a feeling that even though the band is a joke, it doesn't have to be a total throw away one-liner all the time. These slight diversions also keep the record from feeling like a non-stop rush of sugar-smacked silliness, which is something that made the last record less than a success. Hot Mess is a complete success and shows that the band could possibly grow past the comedy and become something else entirely. Not that they need to, though, it's be perfectly fine if Cobra Starship stayed a joke and kept making records as fun and frothy as Hot Mess....full text
BillboardCobra Starship first gained momentum after the 2006 release of its "Snakes on a Plane (Bring It)" theme song for "Snakes on a Plane," and the New York dance-rock act hasn't stopped since. Its third full length album, "Hot Mess," is full of rhythmic dance songs and power-pop anthems -- the set even includes a song title shout-out (crowd-mover "Pete Wentz Is the Only Reason We're Famous") honoring Decaydance founder and Fall Out Boy bassist Wentz. "Nice Guys Finish Last" is a theatrical track layered with co-ed vocals, while "Fold Your Hands Child" opens with harmonies and glistening new wave synth beats taht are similar in tempo to Chris Brown's "Forever." Catching your breath isn't an option on the danceable "The Scene Is Dead; Long Live the Scene," but Cobra Starship is joined by Atlanta rapper B.o.B on the slow jam "The World Will Never Do." The band also collaborated with "Gossip Girl" actress Leighton Meester on the track "Good Girls Go Bad." If you don't finish this part record a hot mess, then you probably didn't have a good time. --Michael Menachem...full text
ThephoenixAre Cobra Starship's gleeful Day-Glo appropriations and their unbridled enthusiasm really indications of a disparity between intention and expression? Or is their crime simply the meta-mania of their fusion of '80s retro kitsch and '00s celebrity worship? Really, it's neither.
Only a music fan obsessed with the rules of authenticity and the requirements for lyrical profundity could find fault with the 11 odes to overload that make up Hot Mess. Well, unless that hypothetical music fan is allergic to asshole frontmen: Gabe Saporta leads these tunes with a kind of Auto-Tuned dorkitude that will polarize even the least judgmental listeners.
Lucky for him, this time his band have the tunes to back up his bluster, from the strange coup that was getting Gossip Girl's Leighton Meester to guest-vocal on lead single "Good Girls Go Bad" to the quizzically titled hyperkinetic rocker "Pete Wentz Is the Only Reason We're Famous" (which steals the chorus of the Damned's "Smash It Up" — I hope Captain Sensible and crew are getting royalties)....full text
Cobra Starship Album Reviews
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Cobra Starship Lyrics
- 1. Guilty Pleasure
- 2. Prostitution Is The World's Oldest Profession (And
- 3. You Make Me Feel
- 4. One Day, Robots Will Cry
- 5. Damn You Look Good And I'm Drunk (Scandalous)
- 6. The City Is At War
- 7. Kiss My Sass
- 8. Angie
- 9. The World Has Its Shine (But I Would Drop It On A
- 10. Good Girls Go Bad Feat. Leighton Meester
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