The Australian pop-punk band Tonight Alive recently released their fourth and final studio album with their founding member Whakaio Taahi. The album, titled Underworld, features 13 songs in total and these accumulate into a total time of roughly 47 minutes. The album is likely to leave the listener extremely confused, with 13 almost identical songs that could probably pass for just one song.
The album begins with the song Book of Love which is incredibly unremarkable and shows no effort or imagination in the process of writing the lyrics. The music that accompanies this monotonous recital is just as uninspiring and shows no signs of creative flare. There are two songs on this album that feature other artists. The song Disappear, which features Lynn Gunn (from the band PVRIS) in particular feels like it was a half-hearted attempt at gaining some more money from the younger pop-punk fans who have begun to wean themselves off of the mainstream world of pop music and No. 1 charts. The second collaborative song on this album is My Underworld which includes some pointless wails from Slipknot’s Corey Taylor.
The overall theme of this album suggests a darkness which is emphasised by the title, but this album doesn’t make you want to investigate or even to focus. It does the opposite, instead nestling itself amongst the background noises of the day (or evening) whilst failing to grasp any attention from the listener who has found themselves stuck with it on repeat and hasn’t noticed.
The album artwork is equally bland and features a block colour and not much else. The addition of the tape like headers hark back to the time of cassettes, but this album would not be in your bag or even inside your Walkman. It is yet another album to add to a CD holder or box that never leaves the attic and eventually finds itself as a 50p instalment in a charity shop. “Underworld” is a pointless album, unless you are 13 and are of the persuasion that pop-punk music is edgy and cool, or if you are struggling to find anything else.