Leave a bottle of champagne out for twenty years, and you'd expect its essential bubbly brightness to be ravaged by . . . let's not fool ourselves: drugs, infighting, egotism and what have you. To the credit of the Go-Go's, they don't forfeit any California sparkle with this slick and listenable reunion effort. The album doesn't attempt to update the band's sound with hip-hop moves or electronic frippery, for which God should bless 'em, indeed. The girls' hold on the current pop world remains so strong that Green Day's Billie Joe Armstrong co-writes a song ("Unforgiven") in impeccable Go-Go's drag. The creamy Valley Girl anthem "Apology" sounds just like vintage Go-Go's and manages to be consummately modern at the same time. Their concerns remain as good-natured as ever: Mean people suck ("Automatic Rainy Day"), driving is a metaphor for love ("Stuck in My Car"). There's no grand scheme in a Go-Go's middle-aged slumber party; there doesn't have to be - it's never a bad plan to put more merry punk pop in the world.
(RS 873 - July 19, 2001)
(Posted: Jun 25, 2001)