Billboard CD reviews: Fall Out Boy and Keyshia Cole
ARTIST: FALL OUT BOY
ALBUM: FOLIE A DEUX
NEW YORK (Billboard) - "Change will come," Patrick Stump sings on "(Coffee's for Closers)," a typically excitable cut from the new Fall Out Boy album. Considering that the Chicago band's original plan to release "Folie a Deux" on Election Day, that lyric was likely intended as a tip of the hoodie to Barack Obama. Now it plays more like an acknowledgement of the evolution of FOB's sound, which since 2005's breakthrough "From Under the Cork Tree" has taken on new complexities without losing the fist-pumping qualities that made Stump and his bandmates mall-punk superstars. "Folie" is easily the group's most adventurous outing yet, with assured forays into blue-eyed soul, arena-ready glam and '80s-style electro. Next time, maybe we'll get that long-promised polka jam.
ARTIST: KEYSHIA COLE
ALBUM: A DIFFERENT ME (Imani Entertainment/Geffen)
Moving past the pain and tears of her first two albums, a sultry Keyshia Cole lets fans know she's ready to give them "A Different Me." Underscoring her mission, the singer-songwriter jump-starts the proceedings with the rollicking party jam "Make Me Over," whose pulsating kick is flavored by interpolations of Ike and Tina Turner's "Tina's Wish" (originally known as "Tina's Prayer"). She keeps the playful fervor going on "Please Don't Stop" before coyly slowing things down on "Erotic." Whether hooking up with real-life friend Monica on the midtempo girl-talk duet "Trust" or channeling her trademark passion on the noteworthy ballads "You Complete Me" and "Brand New," Cole exhibits a growing confidence and command of her vocal talent.
ARTIST: GOOD CHARLOTTE
ALBUM: GREATEST REMIXES (Daylight/Epic Records)
Diehard fans of Good Charlotte's early pop-punk records can't say they didn't see "Greatest Remixes" coming -- at least not if they heard last year's dance-flavored "Good Morning Revival," much of which could've passed for an album by singer Joel Madden's ex, Hilary Duff. Still, the electro-rock remixes collected here (by the likes of Fall Out Boy frontman Patrick Stump, the Academy Is ... and Joseph Hahn of Linkin Park) should serve as definitive notice that GC has left behind its three-chord roots for good. What's less clear is precisely whom this set is intended to lure, considering that "Revival" didn't exactly build the band a base in dance-floor hipster circles. One diamond amid the head-scratching, infrequently booty-moving rough: a hilariously overdriven pump-up of "Girls & Boys" by the Ed Banger Records Allstars. Continued...