Alt-pop band Bleachers (Jack Antonoff) returns with an incredibly energetic, intriguing sophomore effort, ‘Gone Now.’
Following a successful debut album, Bleachers (Jack Antonoff) returns with his highly-anticipated sophomore album, Gone Now. Gone Now is full of ambitious, creative, and dynamic moments. It’s imperfect, but the pros far outweigh the cons.
“Dream of Mickey Mantle”
Bleachers kicks off Gone Now with the alternative bang of “Dream of Mickey Mantle.” Antonoff references the death of legendary baseball player Mickey Mantle during the chorus:
“Now Mickey Mantle left on a Sunday / And all the neighborhood rushes home to play.”
The opener is also interesting because two additional songs from Gone Now are cited lyrically: “I Miss Those Days” and “Don’t Take the Money.” The superbly produced follow-up “Goodmorning” is tough to follow lyrically and thematically. Although the sophomore track is quirky, it’s unique, ultimately.
“Hate That You Know Me”
From the jump, “Hate That You Know Me” has hit written all over it. On the verses, Antonoff builds the case against things he dislikes about himself. He seems to be lying to others and himself. His lover, however, can read between the BS. An uncredited Carly Rae Jepsen provides a brilliant assist. On “Don’t Take the Money,” he depicts elements of his relationship. Some are good, while others aren’t – the push and the pull of love. According to him, “don’t take the money” is a phrase he says to himself regarding a gut feeling. All in all, it’s a winner.
“Everybody Lost Somebody”
Standout “Everybody Lost Somebody” opens mysteriously – an interlude, coupled with production excerpts, muted in the background. This foreshadows what’s to come – a hard-hitting beat, jazzy, soulful saxes, and synths. Expectedly, it’s another production showcase. The vocals are uneven, but playful. The verses on “All My Heroes” are characterized by vocal subtlety. Jack Antonoff sings in an undertone, ascending to a louder dynamic level on the chorus. The enthusiastic “Let’s Get Married” plays like a legit 80s record. It’s predictable compared to the more intriguing, challenging numbers. “Goodbye” is one of many experiments that appeals to some and confounds others.
“I Miss Those Days”
“I Miss Those Days” reminisces on the fun, more adventurous times of the past. The record features a bright, energetic sound, particularly on the chorus sections. The production is boisterous, particularly the signature Bleachers drums. Antonoff’s enthusiasm of Jack is a pro. “Nothing Is U” is a brief ballad with sincerity, yet not particularly rousing. I’m Ready to Move On / Mickey Mantle Reprise” is wild. It’s unique, but definitely somewhere out there. “Foreign Girls” is also off-putting. Still, the chorus is a bright spot, not to mention the robust bass line.
Ultimately, Gone Now is a solid sophomore effort from Bleachers. At times, ambition and production get the best of Jack Antonoff, but more often than not, the LP is successful.
Gems: “Hate That You Know Me,” “Don’t Take the Money,” “Everybody Lost Somebody” & “I Miss Those Days”