Yeah Yeah Yeahs – Cool It Down (Album Review)

One of the frontrunners during the 2000s phase of Alternative and Indie Rock, Yeah Yeah Yeahs have built an award-winning career. Steadily moving forward since 2000, with a brief hiatus between 2014 and 2017, the band, led by Karen O (vocals, piano), Nick Zinner (guitar, keyboards), and Brian Chase (drums), emerged yet again in 2022 with their fifth album, Cool It Down.

Released on Friday September 30th, via Secretly Canadian, Cool It Down marks their first full-length album in nearly a decade. A long time coming, Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ fifth overall studio album takes you to a laidback soundscape of their sonic style, expressing their personal experiences since the last offering, 2013’s Mosquito.

A total of eight new songs, Cool It Down opens with the lead single, “Spitting Off the Edge of the World,” which sounds off the Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ take on the issue of global warming. It is then followed by the ethereal, star-gazing vibe of “Lovebomb,” exuding echoes of Phantogram’s “Run, Run Blood” and Lana del Rey’s “Dark Paradise.” This is before ensuing “Wolf” then undulates its oceanic rhythm, only to take you afterwards to a higher plane of angularity with “Fleez.”

Moving along, the glittery “Burning” invites you for a trip onto the dancefloor, whereas “Blacktop” beats and pulses its sonic splinters impassionedly. Thereafter another Sophisti-pop-glazed ballad plays in the form of “Different Today,” tackling the current state of the world at large. Finally, Yeah Yeah Yeahs wrap up the album with “Mars” which is rather spacey, telegraphic, and very apt.

In the current soundscape of Rock music, making a name for yourself has inevitably become challenging. This is considering the countless number of new groups that have been working hard to make their mark. Lucky for bands like Yeah Yeah Yeahs, they have a good head start. However, this does not mean that the trio are resting on their laurels. Their having released a new record is itself admirable and deserving of recognition. Moreover, Cool It Down is as potent and valuable as any of its predecessors. That is why Cryptic Rock gives the long overdue album 4 out of 5 stars.

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ALfie vera mellaAuthor posts

Born in 1971, in Metro Manila, Philippines, aLfie vera mella is a healthcare worker, singer/songwriter, and editor/writer. He was the frontman of the ’90s-peaking Philippine Alternative Rock / New Wave band Half Life Half Death, which released a full-length album and several singles on Viva Records. aLfie worked at Diwa Scholastic Press as an editor/writer of academic textbooks and supplementary magazines, focusing on Science & Technology and English Grammar & Literature. In 2003, aLfie migrated to Canada; he has since been living in Winnipeg, Manitoba. He works full-time at a healthcare institution, while serving as the associate contributing editor of Filipino Journal—a local community newspaper in Winnipeg—tackling Literature, Languages, Cultures, Lifestyles, and Music. aLfie has been a music journalist since the mid-’90s for various print magazines as well as websites. He started writing album reviews for Cryptic Rock in 2015. In 2016, aLfie published Part One (Literature & Languages and Their Cultural Significance) of his Essay Series, Can You Hear the Sound of a Falling Leaf?; in 2021, his first book of poetry, Pag-íhip sa Dáhon ng Kahápon [Blowing Leaves of Yesterday]. In his spare time, he enjoys reading books and listening to music. aLfie is a dedicated father to his now 13-year-old son, Evawwen; and a loving husband to Kathryn Mella, who herself moonlights also as a writer aside from holding a degree in Bachelor of Arts, Major in Sociology.

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