44 Years since their debut American purveyors of power pop Cheap Trick are still at it, with this month seeing the release of In Another World – their 20th record. Despite nearly half a century in the business they have lost none of their vim, vigour and love for what they do. The high tempo opening salvo of ‘The Summer Looks Good on You’ and the irrepressible ‘Quit Waking Me Up’ reminds you exactly what that is – infectious pop rock.
The chunky slice of rock n roll aptly titled ‘Boys & Girls & Rock N Roll’ and the fiery break up track ‘Here’s Looking at You’ are yet more strings to their bow. ‘The Party’ crackles with life, with soulful backing singers adding that extra oomph. At this point you know what to expect, big riffs and melodious Beatles like pop happily sitting side by side and In Another World delivers both.
There is a lull midway, with the bluesy stomp of ‘Final Days’ and the amped up forgetfulness of ‘Light Up the Fire’. Both of which are either side of ‘So It Goes’ – a loved up, pleasant but unremarkable fab four-esque acoustic ballad, acting rather like a half time intermission.
The best ballad here is the glossy, soothing harmonies of ‘Another World’, a song which gets a lively punk makeover two songs from the end – sounding like Green Day when they were good and framing the album rather nicely. A sprightly album that is refreshingly void of pandemics and politics, we get a glimpse of the latter in their faithful John Lennon cover ‘Gimme Some Truth’.
In Another World is a refreshing blast of feel good pop rock, primed with sweet melodies and crashing riffs. It ain’t new or revolutionary but it is joyful.