Last Goodnight
"Poison Kiss"

(Virgin Records 2007)Last Goodnight - Poison Kiss

Do not let the fact that the lead singer of Connecticut-based The Last Goodnight sports a mohawk give you the wrong impression about the band. The Last Goodnight's major label debut is more Maroon 5 than Rancid. In fact, when it comes down to it, Rancid do not even factor into the equation; unless, of course, Tim Armstrong secretly has a burning, and unlikely, passion for '80s pop music. For "Poison Kiss," The Last Goodnight offers upbeat dance-ready tracks which mingle with soft ballads that are as much '80s as they are Motown.

The ultra smooth chorus quickens the mood on "Good Love" while falsetto vocals lead the piano plinking pop of the album's title track and its near identical twin "Back Where We Belong." The Last Goodnight are surprisingly lacking in hooks on the album although the upbeat sounding "Stay Beautiful" offers some decent attempts. The band does hit a few clichés along the way on "Poison Kiss." From the wistful "If I Talk To God" to the song of longing "In Your Arms," the band's power ballads recycle some typical concepts. Putting some drama into the album, "Incomplete" offers a mid-tempo melody which works well to finalize the album.

The Last Goodnight makes "Poison Kiss" an easy and effortless album. Sure, there is a definite derivative sound on "Poison Kiss" that plays both to the past and the present music scene as power ballads wrestle with numbers catchy enough to get hips moving. And when it comes down to it, it is the imitative sound that holds The Last Goodnight back.

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