Blink-182 Neighborhoods > today Blink is back with their 6th studio album and 1st since the band reunited. The last studio release was their self-titled album in 2003 and shortly after that tour began a half-decade hiatus so 8 years in the making, per se, the trio has finally given us fans the long-awaited follow-up.
The band's break from each other wasn't a break from the rest of the world though. Mark, Tom and Travis have kept pretty busy over the years putting their talents to work with other artists forming new bands, supergroups and even dj-combos. Mark Hoppus fronted +44 with Travis Barker on drums while Tom DeLonge fronted Angels & Airwaves. Both bands were fairly decent side projects in my opinion but I really liked what Travis did away from Blink, joining Tim Armstrong and other Rancid all-stars in the supergroup Transplants. Travis also teamed up with the late great DJ AM collaborating and touring as TRV$DJAM, a drummer and mix-master combo that really brought mash-up to life and in cool, raw form.
While I along with millions of other Blink fans didn't want the band to break up, I can't say it was entirely tragic per the aforementioned productions and what Blink-182's new album brings about. All 3 dudes have become better musicians and it's apparent in Neighborhoods. They don't deviate from their classic Blink formula, splitting vocals between Mark and Tom, and the sound is still fairly bubblegum in nature but it's much more crisp, well-produced [by just them for the first time btw!] and they've subtly experimented with some new pedals to add a little more roughness, a different sound we haven't heard too much of from them in the past. Check out their first single 'Up All Night' or 'Fighting The Gravity' and you'll know what I'm talking about. The interlude before 'Heart's All Gone' shows off their maturing as well.
They're all growns up and they're all growns up and even though we anticipated a continued growing after Blink-182 it's still a pleasant surprise to hear it all come together so nicely. So get your copy of Neighborhoods at your neighborhood shop stat, Zia has it for $9.99 or $11.99 for the deluxe version [or download on iTunes for the same respective prices]. Pick it up. Do it.