REVIEW: Forever The Sickest Kids – The Weekend: Friday

TheWeekendFridayArtist: Forever The Sickest Kids
Album: The Weekend: Friday
Genre: Pop
Label: Universal

When a young band like Forever The Sickest Kids takes over a year to release a follow-up record and instead of giving us 13 news tracks, opts instead to begin releasing a series of EPs dedicated to different days of the weekend, you should get nervous. The more than obvious lack of successful writing [even their full length rehashed songs from their debut EP] over time has shown many of the fleeting careers of the massively popular FTSK. However, the argument that this process will lead to more new music, sooner, is an interesting one. Do teens really think this group, who have yet to release and entirely new set of songs since they hit the scene, are capable of making multiple EPs filled with “good” songs? No one can be that dense. At least, I would sure hope no one could be that dense. Regardless, FTSK and their fans have forged forward and we now have the first in these “sure to be heralded as a bad move” EPs, The Weekend: Friday.

Let’s start out by discussing the cover art: Obviously, the group is depicting the excitement of the weekend arriving, but anyone with eyesight can see all these members are starting to inch toward their mid-20’s and the idea of them fleeing from a high school seems more like a judicial matter than an awesome scene to capture on film. Add to this the group’s recent marketing deal with Nerf which found them rewriting their hit “Whoa” and performing for an advertisement and you’ve got 100%, full fledged corporate sellouts. Now I get it, you’re trying to market to a younger segment of American youth, but those playing with the toys in those ads are too young to be supporting your careers by attending shows and buying merch, so what really are you in this for [*cough* $ *cough*]?

Diving into the real [sad excuse for] meat, aka, the album, we’re instantly bombarded with enough poppy synth to drive even the most synth friendly music fan a bit over the edge. Whatever attempt at songwriting is made on “Do or Die” is quickly forgotten due to the overly common bass and synth lines that weave in and out of the chorus. It sounds like there’s a band playing below it all, but that’s a tough call. Luckily, “Tough Love” arrives just in time to attempt to pick up the listener’s shattered hopes with a by-the-numbers synth pop-rock track that sounds more like a b-side from the full length than an original idea. It’s much more solid than the opener though.

Keeping up with the mediocre music and lyrics that will make you reminisce on the group’s earlier efforts, both “She Likes” and “Take it Slow” go by without even raising an eyebrow or causing the desire to hit the repeat button. It all feels so generic and that’s quite surprising for a band that was so easily able to grab the attention of the national scene just over a year ago. Then again, that year has been filled with upstart electro-pop-rock acts that have raised the bar on what passes as a “good” song idea. I get it: relationships are hard, she doesn’t tell you everything, you still have your friends, you’re young. Did I miss any elements from literally EVERY FTSK song? Doubt it.

I will say that though the album is nowhere near good, it’s not the worst thing I’ve heard this year. Well, that’s what I thought until I head “Hip Hop Chick” and the bonus track, “Hawkbot.” I don’t know what ring of pop hell these wannabe top 40 disasters of tracks crawled out of, but hopefully they crawl right back underground. Don’t even Google them, they’re that bad.

I can honestly admit to being quite excited about the release of The Weekend: Friday. I was a big fan of FTSK’s debut record, but this is nothing more than thinly veiled pop garbage. Nothing is even close to attempting to pass as original. Just recycled chord progressions and lyrics that seem found on the cutting room floor of, oh i don’t know, every pop song ever!

Save yourself and your money – buy something else.

Score: 4/10

James Shotwell

James Shotwell is the founder of Under The Gun Review. He loves writing about music and movies almost as much as he loves his two fat cats. He's also the co-founder of Antique Records and the Marketing Coordinator for Haulix. You should probably follow him on Twitter.

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