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Album Review

Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, 'Lonely Road'

February 2, 2009
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Pop-Punk
Red Jumpsuit Apparatus Lonely Road
Virgin
ESSENTIAL: "Pull Me Back"

If you spend any time listening to modern rock radio, then you're no doubt familiar with "Face Down," the earnest anti-domestic-violence single from Florida's Red Jumpsuit Apparatus. But if you're like us, you never bothered to find out who the band behind it was; it could have been any of a thousand like-sounding acts. With its pop-punk harmonies, screaming breakdown, and soaring chorus, the song seemed more like a faceless commercial product of the millennial youth zeitgeist than the actual effort of real human beings. Which isn't to say generic can't necessarily be enjoyable. It is here. The band's legion of fans (some 50 million streamed the last album on MySpace) won't be disappointed by the 11 charged-up, emo-pop tracks on its second full-length, almost any of which would work just fine as the soundtrack to teenage movie stars making out in the rain in slow motion. When the band flirts with metal (albeit a highly polished version) as on "Pull Me Back" and "You Better Pray," it provokes more successfully than most of the ballads do. (Out tomorrow) LUKE O'NEIL

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