There’s always a good reason to be happy it’s Friday and on April 7 my excitement heightened due to the new release of the Chainsmokers album “Memories … Do Not Open.” After my last article for The Mirror about the Chainsmokers’ top hit single “Something Just Like This,” I anticipated their album to be filled with the same EDM and house party vibe; however, Andrew Taggart and Alex Pall fell short of this expectation.
Spoiler alert: every song in the album has to do with the struggles of a young relationship. Although many college students can relate to the Chainsmokers’ messages, it gets annoyingly redundant after listening to the same basic idea for 12 songs in a row. In addition to the repetitive messages of the songs, Andrew Taggart’s flat vocals — which are featured in more than half of the songs — add another poor quality to the album. By placing Taggart at the forefront of the songs, the album demonstrates why Coldplay’s Chris Martin is the male singer in “Something Just Like This” — he can actually sing whereas Taggart can barely make it through spoken word phrases without straining his voice.
The album opens with a pop-rock ballad named “The One,” which initially feels like the Chainsmokers’ EDM hit song “Closer.” However, after the first minute of the song goes by, it becomes obvious that even though Taggart tried to mimic the quality of “Closer,” it only does so on an anti-climactic level. “The One” tells the story of a man being too wrapped up in “his own selfishness” to concentrate on the relationship. He discusses the importance of just breaking up the relationship, but admits that he doesn’t want to be the one to end it.
Following “The One” is another pop-rock tune called “Break Up Every Night,” which (shockingly) is about a relationship that is on the rocks. Carrying a slightly sexist message, Taggart’s vocals play around with the typical stereotype of an indecisive girlfriend whose numerous emotions are the cause for breakup.
Despite the lackluster album as a whole, there are a couple songs that are worth the listen. “Wake Up Alone” features R&B singer Jhene Aiko and at the the conclusion of the album, Florida Georgia Line makes an appearance in “Last Day Alive.” Florida Georgia Line’s famous harmonies open the song and are later joined by Taggart and Pall’s iconic EDM pulsing rhythms. Incorporating FGL as well as Jhene Aiko into their album proved to be a beneficial decision for the Chainsmokers because those songs (along with “Something Just Like This”) provide the anticipated vocal harmonies and house-party rhythms that the rest of the album lacks.
Even though “Memories … Do Not Open” provided sub-par compositions, according to Official Charts, the album shows that it managed to soar. Currently holding onto the No. 1 spot on iTunes, the album is also set to take Billboard’s No. 1 spot on their next week’s top 200 chart, which will be released on April 17, as it is currently at spot No 3.