Album Review: ‘Memories…Do Not Open’

Before diving into The Chainsmokers’ new album, Memories…Do Not Open, let’s give a quick briefing on the electronic pop duo of Andrew Taggart and Alex Pall. The group made their debut in mainstream media with their 2015 hit song, “#Selfie.” In hindsight, the title of the track alone should have warned us about their future contribution to the downfall of entertainment.

When “Closer” rose to the top of the charts last year, all walks of life within Boulder were prompted to blare it at their parties. When I learned about the reference, I knew the song would be force fed to me at every upcoming college function I attended.

Even after the “Closer,” what’s the word, “epidemic,” I still wanted to tackle The Chainsmokers new album with a clean slate. But after listening to Memories…Do Not Open, I can confidently say that their cyclical pattern of drab, toothless songwriting continues on – and their overrated EDM-pop will likely be blasted from the rooftops of frat houses for months to come.

The album’s theme of relatable experiences is lyrically translated through songs like “Bloodstream,” “Don’t Say,” and “Something Just Like This.” In a quote taken from their Facebook page, the duo wrote,“We have been put in this box of who we are supposed to be and what people think of us, and now we are literally taking that box and showing you what is really inside us.”

However, songs like “Young” and “My Type” contradict their effort to appear more artistically deep. If that leaving box means reminiscing on nostalgic times like wrecking a car and romanticizing toxic relationships with uncaring alcoholics, then sure, they’ve achieved depth.

Memories…Do Not Open is a reiteration of all of the duo’s previous work. Their signature style of redundant dance-floor beats that lead into generic drops works as a nice platform for conventional party tunes, but lacks any and all depth. I consider myself a big fan of electronic music, but it’s groups like these that make it difficult to stand up for the genre.

Memories…Do Not Open gets a 2 out of 10.

Contact CU Independent Arts Writer Kristin Endahl  at kristin.endahl@colorado.edu 

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