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Blink-182 album review: back in the groove

MUSIC IS A COPY OF THE WILL. Er, pun intended. “Will”: that is, straight from the Cosmic Conductress’s womb, the divine music of the spheres, without mediation of an “image” (like a movie)— according to Schopenhauer. One writer heaps praise on the new album, sheepishly prays that The Times-Delphic won’t have his neck for mentioning onanism and is maudlin about the salad days. PHOTO BY courtesy of wikimedia commons

Blink-182 recently released their newest album, “One More Time,” marking the first album to feature Tom DeLonge, Mark Hoppus and Travis Barker since their 2012 album “Dogs Eating Dogs.”

As someone who started listening to Blink-182 in middle school, right when Matt Skiba joined the band, I waited for almost nine years to hear new music with DeLonge, and hopefully see the main three live as well. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed Skiba with Blink-182 (and Alkaline Trio as well,) and I think he’s a talented musician, but DeLonge was a huge part of Blink’s biggest hits, like “All the Small Things” and “I Miss You.” When I heard DeLonge rejoined in Oct. 2022, I couldn’t wait for their first album with him back.

“One More Time” is a mix of vintage Blink-182, with a few tracks that took the album to a level I haven’t seen from Blink in years. Five singles were released before the album, including “EDGING,” “ONE MORE TIME,”  “MORE THAN YOU KNOW,” “DANCE WITH ME,” “FELL IN LOVE” and “YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT YOU’VE GOT.”

“EDGING” might be my favorite song on the entire album, although this was the only single from the album for 11 months, so I’m still deciding which of the tracks I like the most. When I first heard “EDGING”, I almost couldn’t believe I was hearing DeLonge  back with Blink-182. The entire song just came together perfectly, with DeLonge and Hoppus trading off lead vocals and Barker’s upbeat drum intro. It was one hell of a song for DeLonge to announce to Blink fans “I’m back!”

When I listened to the album for the first time, I was surprised when I heard an acoustic guitar introducing the title track “ONE MORE TIME” I was ready for DeLonge’s distorted guitar, Hoppus’s signature bass lines and Travis’ wild and upbeat drumming, but I wasn’t ready for this. The lyrics “Do I have to die to hear you miss me? Do I have to die to hear you say goodbye?” were like a knife tearing through my heart. Not only with stuff I’ve seen in my life, but with Hoppus’s battle against cancer in 2021, that lyric just hit me hard. It reminded me to appreciate everyone in my life, tell my family and friends that I love them and, like they said in the song, “I don’t want to act like there’s tomorrow.”

When I was streaming the album on Spotify and I heard DeLonge sing “When I teach masturbation, I’m always just like, ‘Have fun with it’” at the beginning of “DANCE WITH ME” I burst out laughing and wasn’t sure I was going to be able to put this in the article, but here we are. This song reminds me of something you would hear on “Take Off Your Pants and Jacket.” It’s like Blink took us back to June 2001, when Drake students were probably listening to that album on CDs or MP3 players.

“FELL IN LOVE” reminds me of “Bloody Valentine” by Machine Gun Kelly, which happened to be produced by Barker. While I may be the only one that thinks it sounds similar, that doesn’t mean it’s a bad song. Blink tells a unique story of someone reminiscing on a previous relationship they had, going back through their memories, meeting them at a party with their ex, when they fell in love, you get the point. Definitely not a song you would play as the first dance at your wedding, but hey, maybe later in the night the rest of the wedding crowd would enjoy it. I certainly would.

“YOU DON’T WHAT YOU’VE GOT” is the last single that really made me stop and really listen to the story DeLonge and Hoppus were telling. This song again really reminds me of Hoppus’s battle with cancer, serving as a reminder to us (similar to what was said in “ONE MORE TIME”) that life is short and we don’t know when “it’s almost gone.” It’s an upbeat but emotional song. The ending where they sing “and over, and over,” repeatedly reminds me of “First Date” where DeLonge sings in the chorus “forever, and ever, and ever.” Although they are two different songs, I just liked the similarities between the two lyrics.

This is just a fantastic album all around. If you didn’t know Blink had a new album with DeLonge, or you’re just looking to hear new music in general, this is an album you’re going to want to check out. There is one deep track on the album, “CHILDHOOD,” that really hit me in my feelings. 

DeLonge and Hoppus sing about a childhood where “we thought we knew everything,” and the song in general reminded me of my life. While it wasn’t my childhood, it reminded me of my final years of high school and looking back on it nearly four years from when I graduated. It reminded me of how fast time went by when I was there, and I felt like I didn’t appreciate the experiences and the people enough. By the time I had realized it, the world was in lockdown from the COVID-19 pandemic, and it was too late to go back to school again, even if it was just for one more time.

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