Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating 7/10
The state on the edge of the world, from the end of land, one constantly under the pressure of fissures and the prospect of annihilation, one place never too far from the self appointed big one, California is a place in which dreams are hatched, made reality, loved and ultimately destroyed by greed and the need for constant re-invention.
It is re-invention that comes across in force with arguably one of the best post-Britannia and late 70s Punk bands Blink 182. The decade of indifference and striking colours battering against the beige is now lost in time, like a musical Atlantis swallowed by years of meaningless pop, the resurfacing of Progressive Rock and the banal era of everything else in between, Blink 182 for just over a decade kept the dream of anarchy and quick bursts of light in the public eye.
Dreams die, in California, as they do everywhere but sometimes they hang on in shards so small they are barely noticeable to the human senses, but collectively, together they still mean something and the long road back might be dangerous, filled with the dying embers of what could be, nonetheless everything has to restart again somewhere.
In the affections of a new dawn, Blink 182, once more devoid of Tom De Longe, have found a way to rise out of the burnt offerings of disaffected youth and given their all to once more resuming, regenerating their music for a new revival and with Matt Skiba in tow, the long road is resumed and it is one with several moments of good fortune trapped, waiting to be released, within it.
To be cynical is to have a healthy mind and to make use of it in music is to belong to a different set of values. Not ones to rest easy, California might on first listen seem an average kind of album, scattered former memories trying to bond together once more in the dark and yet tracks such as Bored To Death, No Future, Rabbit Hole and Sober are genuinely touching pieces wrapped in pessimism and verging on the dry wit of sarcasm. It is a bond ready to be made whole, to garner the love and affection bestowed upon a band in another time, another place that wasn’t on the edge of the world.
California marks a return, once you hit the ocean there is nowhere else to go but home.
Ian D. Hall