The CLUAS Archive: 1998 - 2011


A review of the album 'Streets of Gold' by 3OH!3

album Streets of GoldReview Snapshot: With a confident blend of so many new music styles its fair to say 3OH!3 are distinctly different from other chart contenders.  However the sophomoric attitude and appalling lyrics are so bad you’ll quickly wonder if it’s all part a great commercial con.

The Cluas Verdict: 3/10

Full Review: It’s not easy to be critical about a band that constantly defends their product as fun.  Fun however sells albums and rakes in the cash for the record companies. (Chart topping twins anyone?) so at the risk of being a party pooper I had an in-depth listen to 30H!3 to see if I could decipher the glitter from the gold.

Sean Foreman and Nathaniel Motte of 3OH!3 recently released ‘Streets of Gold’.  Named after their postal code in Colorado, the boys claim to not take themselves or the industry seriously.  True to form, the album, which is jammed with popular electro hop and crunk, is a perfect snapshot of youthful exuberance and the macho swagger that often accompanies it. 

You don’t need to delve far into Streets of Gold however before understanding why the music requires constant defending.‘House party’s needlessly illustrative chants are downright annoying. “I’m gonna have a house party in my house, I’m gonna pour booze down my mouth”.  While ‘Ican do Anything’ is nothing more than an incessant teenage brattish rant of . “I aint gonna take no shit from no one..I can do anything I want”.   Kevin the teenager has nothing on these boys.

Musically 3OH!3 are an electro hop band, nothing new in that, The pop-charts are saturated with this style favored by the Black Eyed Peas, David Guetta, and Flo Rida to mention a few,  but by mashing this with rock and punk-crunk there’s no denying a specific sound.   It’s this sound that’s been their fortune to date securing the success of their last album ‘Want’. Like it or not, the crunk influenced barking lyrics on playing the field and brash electro beats are attractive to a teen ear; “We could do it viral..Spread it like an STD you got back in high school”

With an uncategorisable sound its impossible to compare 3OH!3 to their industry peers. A clever marketing ploy perhaps to counteract the dire lyrics, infantile subject matter and over-treated vocals.  Rap is prominent throughout but with so much else happening these two physics graduates get away with having zero street-cred in a way that heavyweight rappers simply don’t. 

The frenzied non-sensical lyrics come in great gushes and track-titles are endlessly repeated.  Foreman & Motte admit to retreating to a snowy log cabin and writing as much as two songs every day for 14 days; “it was like a mental vomit of all the stuff we had been thinking”.  

‘Touchin on my …’includes a censors beep. Hopelessly unoriginal considering the Pussycat Doll’s interpretation 5 years ago.‘My First Kiss’ and ‘Starstrukk receive lots of airplay, but only due to collaborations with current chart angels Ke$ha and Katy Perry. At a push ‘I Know How To Say’ gets my best of a bad bunch vote.  Unlike the other sloth-like efforts at melody making, it’s catchy. 70’s riff’s mashed with a throbbing bassline and a confident refrain that sounds uncannily Blizzards-like.

3OH!3 clearly take their commitment not to be serious, very seriously indeed. Tracks on partying hardly require a Pulitzer winning approach, yet the lyrics are unforgivably cringeworthy and sound phony. Its possible 3OH!3 are masquerading as ‘too cool for school’ purely to make a quick buck.   No one could stand over lyrics like “Everyone say fuck the DJ’s cause they ain’t playin my shit..At my house I’ll be playin my shit” and feel it was the best they could have brought to the table.

If your American Pie box-set still holds pride of place in the living room then you’ll probably get a kick out of this, but anyone hoping for a bit more substance will quickly sense this isn’t the genuine article. 

Yvonne Moore

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