What’s worse than a singer who follows a mundane formula? It’s knowing that the singer could’ve done so much better.
Such as it is with Lennon. Her debut album, 5:30 Saturday Morning, growls, snarls and stumbles its way through an already well-navigated musical region: grinding guitars mismatched with a polished female voice. In short, this has been done before.
The opening track, “Property of Goatfucker,” sounds like a typical metal song interrupted by Lennon’s singing, and confusing lyrics bog down “Trying to Make Me.”
But the album does have its share of interesting moments. In “My Beautiful,” sprinkles of piano chords blend with crushing guitar riffs, creating something aching but pretty. And her fierce yet sonorous voice lends itself well to creeping, gentle songs such as “Asking You.” And there are times where her voice matches perfectly with the guitars, as in “I Hear.” You’re just left wishing she would’ve done more with that sound. Instead, she goes for guitar riffs and voice distortion.
It appears as though she’s not sure where to direct her sound, wandering from too angry to too gentle, which gives the album an almost schizophrenic sound. Lennon tried desperately to break out of a mold and didn’t. Rarely does her music stray from a standard formula.
What Lennon does, she does well. Unfortunately, it’s been done before, and done better.
Evelyn Aschenbrenner is a Metro Times intern. E-mail comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.