5 Seconds of Summer begins to blaze its own trail

Maddi Loiselle, IV Leader Columnist

5 Seconds of Summer, more commonly known as 5SOS (or the band that toured with One Direction), have certainly shown the world that they deserve a spot in the music business.

Their debut album graced the No.1 slot on the Billboard 200, and received many awards, but it was not a remarkable album. It had some monumental songs (most notably “She Looks So Perfect”), but overall, it was not destined to be the album by which they would be remembered. They were living under the shadow of One Direction and the product was an album they thought people wanted to hear.

They threw all that aside for their sophomore effort, and wrote “Sounds Good Feels Good” for themselves. Their sophomore record hosts an array of emotion from growing up and the need to belong. With “SGFG,” these young Australians made leaps and bounds lyrically and musically. Their quick fame allowed them a budget much larger than most bands on their second album can even dream of, and the men used this to their advantage: a choir adds depth to their message and the London Symphony Orchestra appears on more than one moving track, with an emphasis on the string section. Long-time fans will be pleased with their progression and newfound listeners will find a reason to stay.

While most tracks revolve around a female as in the past, the album does boast a few upbeat songs written with the live show in mind. “Hey Everybody!” is about being young and no matter how little money you possess, you can still have a good time.  Pursuing a girl with all the perks that being in a band possesses is the inspiration behind “Money” (the most comical line being “Take my money/ take my keys/drive this car through the drive-thru please”).

The first single, “She’s Kinda Hot,” is not about an attractive woman, contrary to the title and opening verse. According to the Pop Shop Broadcast on Billboard with drummer Ashton Irwin, it was written for the fans to give them “a revolution… to get behind … it goes to the chorus saying we’ll be all right, because we’re the kings and the queens of the new broken scene, and we’re all together in this.”

Amid the high-energy numbers are many of the classic teenage love songs. While the majority of the band’s repertoire is about the female walking all over the male, this album has mostly avoided that, save for one track. The remaining songs focus only on reclaiming what the narrator has lost, not who was wrong and who was right.

“Jet Black Heart” is one of the better romantic tracks because it takes a humble approach to asking for a second chance. The narrator lays out all of his faults and knows there is no hope to getting her back, but he throws his heart out there anyway.

The album possesses personal and powerful tracks. “Broken Home” chronicles the pain of a child of divorced parents. Whether you are from a broken home or not, the song will break your heart and leave a lasting impression.

“Invisible” portrays a young narrator that never felt he fit in and wondered if the world had something more to offer him. The ending string number breathtakingly illustrates that feeling of being lost.

The final track has two songs: “Outer Space/Carry On.” “Outer Space” is meant for remembering past experiences with the greatest people you’ve ever met. “Carry On” is a reminder that no matter how tough the times are, things will always get
better.

Taking from inspirations, 5SOS use a few lines from the final song to seal in the message of living in the moment, realizing nothing is perfect, and knowing there is a better tomorrow: “Carry on, let the good times roll/Sail along, let your path unfold/
It won’t be long/You know it’s gonna get better.”

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