RATING: 3 / 5 stars
By Chris Moore:
So Jealous brings to mind the definition of a three star album.
If one star indicates one’s ability to record an album and five stars suggests one’s talent for producing superior, impressive music, then three stars is a rating for a good album. In this case, Tegan and Sara have found a unique sound for themselves and embraced it. It is a good album that I have enjoyed—I am arguably biased in their favor, as my first two listenings took place on a two and a half mile stretch of I-91 during a major traffic jam; they saved me from utter boredom and frustration.
Yes, it is a good album. Does it demonstrate the musical genius of Brian Wilson? Does it compete for poetic excellence with the Wallflowers? Does it draw you in entirely, body and soul, as Jack Johnson’s new album can? The answer to these questions is an honest “no.”
This being said, I have learned that one cannot expect miracles out of every album ever made.
Tegan and Sara’s greatest strength lies in their ability to combine acoustic and electric elements. The first track demonstrates their very catchy sound as it builds from an acoustic song to an all-out electrified jam. And they sound good together. The combination of their voices is a blend that is pleasing to the ear.
For the most part, the songs are successful—memorable, even. This is not an album with one or two good songs and the remainder a void of throwaways. After all, how can one resist their cries for the subject of one song to “take me anywhere”? Or ignore their quiet, though authoritative pleas for another not to “get so uptight,” then to “Go away!”?
They have chosen to incorporate basic harmonies, which is a good choice for their vocal blend. Even their slower songs have a backbeat that drives them simply—as is the case with their vocals—yet effectively.
The most significant factor in my mediocre rating of this album lies in their one notable flaw—repetition. On several tracks, they tend to take the same chorus, albeit a well-written, catchy chorus, and repeat it too many times. Ending some songs earlier or expanding the lyrics would have significantly improved the flow of the album.
I truly believe that they have it in them to write better songs. Actually, I should say they have it in them to better the songs they have already written. “You Wouldn’t Like Me,” “I Bet It Stung,” “I Won’t Be Left,” “Walking With A Ghost,” and “Fix You Up” are strong tracks and very good songs. They are performed in a heartfelt manner by two talented young songwriters who are perhaps a couple of the world’s last, best hopes for successful women artists in the music industry. They write their own songs, play their own instruments, are entirely clothed in all their pictures, and criticisms aside, have produced a thoroughly enjoyable album.