No Doubt a bad album

Gabrielle Steiger

Patricia Rocha, Editor in Chief

After listening to the new No Doubt album, “Push and Shove,” I am extremely disappointed. However, I wasn’t disappointed from the start.

When I first heard the single “Settle Down” online I was really excited for what else was coming. The song had the right hook and the rocksteady-influenced sound that everyone’s used to, and I could not have been more excited to listen to a whole album of the same.

That’s where the positivity ended. As the rest of the album played, I could feel the disappointment settling in. After listening to song after song with lackluster lyrics, tame melodies and a couple half-assed attempts at rhythm with a horn section or two, I was digging through my garbage can for my receipt.

I’ve been a No Doubt fan my whole life. Gwen Stefani has always been a personal hero of mine with her singing style, fashion sense and entrepreneurial spirit, but now I’m wondering if all of those side projects and parenthood hindered her ability to make songs like “Hella Good” and “Excuse Me Mister.” This was once a woman who collaborated with Bradley Nowell on Sublime songs when 3rd-wave Ska arrived in the ‘90s, and turned complete heartbreak into an instant breakup classic in “Don’t Speak.”

I wanted that Gwen; I wanted that No Doubt. Instead, I got a CD that sounds like a debut album for a band that just wants to make it out of their garage to the radio so everyone will like them. Almost every song on the album sounds the same, and I kept skipping through them to find something worth listening to and ended up coming back to “Settle Down” and “Push and Shove” featuring Busy Signal and Major Lazer.

I just can’t understand how a creative band, that constantly produced hits with every album in the past, could completely lose the sound that they’re known for. After a few listens, I was just annoyed. Out of 11 brand new songs, I only like two. Where were the anthemic lyrics from “Just a Girl?” The party staples like “Hey Baby?” The romantic, rocksteady rhythms of “Underneath It All?”

I kept listening to the album over and over thinking maybe with some time I’ll warm up to it but no. It’s just bad. It pains me to put that in writing, but this is just hands down a bad album. I don’t have the heart to give this album a one star, so it gets one for each song I can stand to listen to.