Following two EPs that drew comparisons to Spoon—comparisons which evidently dropped the qualifier “for the functionally illiterate and hearing impaired”—the first proper album from Columbus, Ohio-based outfit The Sun, Blame It On The Youth, would have been hard-pressed to impress many people with its mixture of warmed-over garage-rock, decade-dated Britpop, and ironically cheery backup vocal harmonies when the band first signed to Warner Bros. back in 2002. With just a handful of legitimately catchy songs (“Lost At Home,” which has a nice punch to its rhythm section, and “Rockstop,” which includes the album’s only effective use of electronic elements), Blame It On The Youth provides yet another piece of evidence as to why “garage” failed to reinvigorate modern rock. There’s a technical proficiency to The Sun that suggests they could evolve into something more relevant, but most of Blame It On The Youth sounds like something the TRL set who were really into Jet would dig, and the worst of it sounds like The Vines trying to pull off a Devo cover, complete with sarcastic handclaps. The album’s lyrics gain points for their unintentional comedy (“Who do you think you are, Mr Guitar-Man/Strutting so tall like only Chicken Little can?” from “Waiting On High” is a couplet only Cibo Matto could deliver straight-faced, and the album’s first two songs, “Must Be You” and “Say Goodbye,” make apparently unironic equations between alcohol and death), but, bad in neither a unique nor a particularly memorable way, Blame It On The Youth hardly registers any real offense with which to take issue.
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