Blink-182 (album)

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Blink-182
Studio album by Blink-182
Released November 18, 2003
Recorded January 3 – October 8, 2003
The Rubin's House, Signature Sound, Rolling Thunder
(San Diego, California)
Conway Recording Studios
(Hollywood, California)
Genre
Length 49:23
Label Geffen (986 140-7)
Producer Jerry Finn
Blink-182 chronology
Take Off Your Pants and Jacket
(2001)
Blink-182
(2003)
Greatest Hits
(2005)
Singles from Blink-182
  1. "Feeling This"
    Released: October 2, 2003
  2. "I Miss You"
    Released: February 9, 2004
  3. "Down"
    Released: June 22, 2004
  4. "Always"
    Released: November 1, 2004

Blink-182 is the eponymously titled fifth studio album by the American rock band Blink-182. It was produced by Jerry Finn and released November 18, 2003, through Geffen Records. Following the band's ascent to stardom and success of their prior two releases, the trio were compelled to take a break and subsequently participated in various side projects (Box Car Racer and Transplants). When they regrouped, the band felt inspired to approach song structure and arrangements differently on their next effort together. The record was left untitled as to refrain from labeling its content, and its packaging features a "smiley face" logo inspired by pop art.

Recorded throughout 2003, Blink-182 marks a departure from the band's earlier work, infusing experimental elements into their usual pop punk sound, inspired by lifestyle changes (the band members all became fathers before the album was released) and side projects. Its songs are characterized by downcast and expansive sonic atmospheres, showcasing a more elaborate, mature side of the band. Songwriting is more personal in nature and explores darker territory, touching upon the realities of adulthood and unexpected hardships. The record features a collaboration with The Cure frontman Robert Smith.

Fans were generally split regarding the band's "new" direction, but the record proved successful, going double-platinum in the United States. The album received critical acclaim, with critics welcoming the change in tone, as well as the experimentation. Lead singles "Feeling This" and "I Miss You" received the most radio airplay of the four singles released and peaked high on Billboard charts. The worldwide touring schedule, which saw the band travel to Japan and Australia, also found the three performing for troops stationed in the Middle East. Blink-182 was the band's last recording with longtime producer Jerry Finn and their final original material before a four-year long hiatus.

Background[edit]

Take Off Your Pants and Jacket became Blink-182's first number one album in the United States upon its June 2001 release; it also hit the top position in Canada and Germany. Hit singles "The Rock Show" and "First Date" continued the band's mainstream success worldwide, with MTV cementing their image as video stars.[1] DeLonge felt "bummed out" in the studio during recording of the album, feeling as though his creativity was stifled by label limitations.[2][3] The band rescheduled European tour dates in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks,[4] and they were called off a second time after DeLonge suffered a herniated disc in his back.[5][6] With time off from touring, DeLonge felt an "itch to do something where he didn't feel locked in to what Blink was,"[2][7] and channeled his chronic back pain and resulting frustration into Box Car Racer (2002), a post-hardcore disc that further explores his Fugazi and Refused inspiration.[6][8] Refraining from paying for a studio drummer, he invited Barker to record drums on the project.[9]

Box Car Racer, intended as a one-time experimental project, became a full-fledged band with Barker behind the kit and Hazen Street guitarist David Kennedy on guitar.[3] Hoppus felt betrayed and jealous, and it would create an unresolved tension within the trio that followed the band for several years.[3] "At the end of 2001 it felt like Blink-182 had broken up. It wasn’t spoken about, but it felt over," said Hoppus later.[10] Barker, meanwhile, joined rap rock group Transplants in 2002, and was featured on their first album, Transplants.[11] Through a connection with Jerry Finn, Rancid vocalist Tim Armstrong contacted Barker in the summer of 2002 to record tracks for the collaboration.[12] Barker also sat in with Dave Carlock's band The Distillers for summer tour dates as well.[13] For his role on the Transplants record, Rolling Stone called Barker "punk rock's first superstar drummer."[14] Hoppus, meanwhile, busied himself with a role on UPN's Haunted, where he portrayed a hermetical man of the mountains.[15] In addition, Blink-182 co-headlined the Pop Disaster Tour with Green Day, alongside opening acts Jimmy Eat World, Saves the Day and Kut U Up in 2002.[16]

The post-hardcore sound of Box Car Racer inspired the change in tone and experimental nature the band approached Blink-182 with.[17] Hoppus described his desire for the album to experiment with different arrangements in a 2002 interview: "Before, we got one guitar sound that we changed a little bit through the record. This time we want to try a whole different setup for each song."[18] Hoppus recalled that Barker entered the production process by urging the band to "[not think of the album] as the next Blink-182 record — think of it as the first Blink-182 record."[19] The members were also inspired after hearing Houston: We Have a Drinking Problem by Bad Astronaut and its expansion upon punk rock.[18] "Once the door was opened by Tom and Travis with Box Car Racer, Mark started to be more on board with that concept. He was also more flexible and the next Blink album was able to be a pretty big departure from the previous two," said assistant engineer Sam Boukas.[20] "Box Car Racer opened the door in that sense and I think the three of them wanted to be more creative and have more creative liberty on that next album."[20]

Recording and production[edit]

In January 2003, the band rented a home in the San Diego luxury community of Rancho Santa Fe, planning to record the entire album there.[21][22] In addition to being converted into a studio, pay-per-view pornography was on continuous play, and it included a space to "smoke hella weed" in the garage.[21] The trio ditched their typical previous recording process (writing and demoing several songs and recording them in a studio one instrument at a time), and instead approached each song together.[19] The band "attacked" each song and worked on three-four songs per day, simply moving on to the next one when feeling "burned out" on a track.[19] The band recorded at the home until April 2003, when the owners of the house "kicked them out."[23] Barker left that spring to tour with Transplants, leaving the band with a variety of drum tracks to listen to while he was gone. The band regrouped and began recording at Rolling Thunder studios until the band left to perform a couple of summer shows in Canada and Japan, where they premiered several songs live.[23] The in-studio antics and behind the scenes moments were recorded and posted on the official Blink-182 website throughout 2003.[24] The videos are no longer on the website, but can be found on YouTube.

The recording process of the album eventually lasted from January to August 2003, with an additional mixing and mastering period lasting until October.[19] Previous Blink-182 sessions were recorded in three months.[25] The band stated that being in a studio longer than three months gave them the luxury of experimenting with different methods of writing, playing, and recording.[25] Hoppus described the studio as a "musical laboratory": over 70 guitars, 30 amps, "30 or 40" different snare drums, up to six drum kits, and various keyboards, turntables, and pianos were used in the album's production.[26] The band built each song with a minute attention to detail.[27] The trio sent The Cure frontman Robert Smith the bed track of "All of This" in hopes he would contribute; Smith makes a guest appearance and recorded his parts in England. The three initially believed their legitimacy would be in question due to the humor-oriented nature of their earlier recordings, to which Smith responded, "Nobody knows what kind of songs you are going to write in the future and nobody knows the full potential of any band. I really like the music you sent me."[28] The band also collaborated with DJ Shadow and Dan the Automator, and Barker desired to work with The Neptunes.[29] Jerry Finn, who had produced the previous two Blink-182 albums and the Box Car Racer album, returned to produce Blink-182, which would be his final contribution with the band.[18][30]

As the record neared completion by August, the band performed for a short time for the armed forces in the Middle East, and premiered more new songs at their Reading and Leeds sets.[25][31] The trio shot small, home-made videos for several songs on Blink-182, as well as the official music video for "Feeling This", which they picked as the first single.[23][32][33][34] The band spent time to finalize the CD booklet and album artwork in September. Mark Hoppus stated that the album was so "personal to all three of us that we really wanted to be involved in every aspect of it."[23] The release date kept getting missed and pushed back to where Jordan Schur, then-president of Geffen Records, made calls asking, "What is the absolute last possible second that we can turn this thing in and still make our release date?"[23] DeLonge described the final days of mixing the album as "crazy stressful", with "literally hours to turn [the album] to have it come it out on time."[23] The album was in production so late that final mixes were still being judged by Hoppus, DeLonge, and Barker the night before the album was sent to the pressing plant.[23]

Composition[edit]

Music and style[edit]

While still rooted in pop punk, Blink-182 finds the band expanding their sonic template with darker, restless songs.[35] The compositions on the record have been described as musically diverse and "borderline experimental,"[36] with sullen moodiness and off-kilter hooks the basis for many tracks.[35] The record pulls from a variety of styles, including electronic rock, jangle pop, and "reflective" alternative rock.[32] Experimentation was constantly present: the band tried different mic techniques[2] and toyed with Polynesian Gamelan bells and turntables.[37] The band infused these experimentalist elements into their usual pop punk sound, inspired by lifestyle changes (the band members all became fathers before the album was released) and side-projects (Box Car Racer and Transplants.)[25] In a full article about the album in the November 20, 2003, edition of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Ben Wener described the music of the album as "expansive, downcast, and sometimes spectral."[26] The New York Times considered that the album may have been influenced by the growing popularity of emo pop,[38] while Allmusic regarded it a delve into post-punk.[35] "Much of the punk has been dissolved, the buzzsaw guitars faded into the corners, allowing room for staggering dynamics, cathartic guitar bursts and a weightier, more experimental and ambitious sound," wrote Tom Bryant of Kerrang!.[10] The goal for Blink-182 was continuity: each song develops lyrically like chapters in a book, and songs segue into one another to present a cohesive feel instead of a regular collection of tracks.[25][27] In addition to the side-projects, the music of the album was inspired by the September 11 attacks and the onset of the Iraq War.[32] The mood was unsettling for DeLonge, whose brother is a Navy officer: "It was so weird because we'd all be glued to the TV, watching these bombs explode over another country. So I'd see all this and wonder where he was at, and then we'd have to go into the next room and sing or finish writing lyrics. I think it affected our moods throughout the day."[32]

Lyrics[edit]

"I think the second half of the record being written in LA was key. [In] San Diego [...] It's very beautiful and rich and everything I don't want to see when I'm writing a record, not a punk rock record [...] Being in Los Angeles, the heart of fucking street bombs to drug dealers to pimps to fucking gang bangers, that gives you inspiration. Like me sitting in fucking San Diego seeing rich people drive their nice cars and go to their nice houses doesn't do shit for me."

 —Travis Barker on the recording process[39]

Music critics agreed that this album represents a more "mature" Blink-182 than seen in the past,[35] noticeable by the absence of songs with toilet humour or jokes for which the band had been known. Mark Hoppus, the bassist in the band, said in an interview with MTV Album Launch that the desired effect of the album was for people to listen to it and say, "Wait a minute...that's Blink-182?"[23] The themes for the album include growing up and dealing with the realities of adulthood including relationship woes, daily pressures and unexpected hardships.[25] The album is lyrically consumed with sorrow and uncertainty about the world.[26] Entertainment Weekly described the album as a concept album based on a dying relationship, a "self-meditation on romantic decay."[40][41] "I think at this point in our career, we are better musicians and we've evolved our way of thinking as far as songwriting," DeLonge told Billboard in reference to the band's more mature lyricism.[28] Hoppus, in his interview with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, described the lyrics as the most personal he had written up to that point. While past recordings tended to meditate on feelings from high school, the band felt it was akin to safety net and desired to write about "what's going on […] right now."[26]

Songs[edit]

"Stockholm Syndrome" was inspired by World War II. During production, the band used a vintage microphone and played the recordings into a shower to achieve unique reverb.

"I'm Lost Without You" mixes an industrial loop with piano, and contains an extended outro featuring two dueling drum tracks.

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The record opens with "Feeling This", which features flanged drums and an unconventional "syncopated Latin-flavored backbeat and a harmony-rich chorus" following a series of "half-barked" vocals.[25] "Feeling This" was the first song written for the album, and illustrates a scenario of lust, ambivalence and regret, with the protagonist of the song reflecting over his romance's dimming flame in the chorus: "Fate fell short this time/Your smile fades in the summer."[25] Hoppus and DeLonge wrote the song in two different rooms and upon meeting to discuss the song, the two realized they had both written about sex: the passionate, lustful side (reflected in the verses) and the romantic side (the choruses).[42] It segues into "Obvious", which explores the Wall of Sound technique[40] and features a brooding, heavy intro combined with cascading guitar riffs.[43] "Obvious" equates broken hearts with global violence.[26] "I Miss You" is an all-acoustic affair, featuring a melancholy piano, cello, upright acoustic bass, and a "brushstroked hip-hop groove."[32][40] The song features references to Tim Burton's 1993 animated film The Nightmare Before Christmas, with "We can live like Jack and Sally" and "We'll have Halloween on Christmas". In interviews and the liner notes for Blink-182, Barker reveals that the line was directed towards his then girlfriend, Shanna Moakler.[42] "Violence" flicks between "bizarre, spoken jazzy verses and anthemic punk rock choruses."[43][44]

"Stockholm Syndrome" has been described as "the most obvious examples of Blink-182's experimentation",[19] was recorded using a microphone dating back to the 1950s, and the reverb on the vocals was achieved by playing the recordings into a shower. The drum fills for the song were recorded separately than the rest of the tracks, with the tape machines "sped up and super compressed", then played back at normal speed, to sound really "deep and gigantic", according to Hoppus in the liner notes for Blink-182.[42] It features an interlude before it in which Joanne Whalley reads letters Hoppus' grandfather wrote to his grandmother during World War II.[45][19][46] DeLonge explained the letters as "Real sincere, genuine letters from the worst war in history."[19] "Down" continues the theme of longing, set to a rain-drenched soundscape.[47] The original version of "Down" ran over six minutes long, and contained a drum and bass breakdown from Barker.[10] "The Fallen Interlude" finds Barker showcasing different percussive techniques over a funk-tinged jazz sound. It is a near-instrumental recorded with Sick Jacken of hip-hop band Psycho Realm.[43] "Go" is the record's only straight punk rock song, and precedes "Asthenia", in which real NASA transmissions from the Apollo 9 space flight are used.[19] "Asthenia" was written by DeLonge after he pictured a lonely astronaut in space, "contemplating if even coming back or not will make a difference on such a negative place."[42]

"Always" features an uptempo backbeat combined with a New Romantic-era keyboard, and pulls from new wave influences; the band often jokingly called the track the "'80s song."[48] It contains a riff reminiscent of The Only Ones' "Another Girl, Another Planet".[47] "Easy Target" and "All of This" were based on a story from producer Jerry Finn's middle school years. Finn was in love with a female classmate, Holly, who invited him over, only for have her and her friend drench him with a hose; humiliated, he rode home on his bicycle.[45][42] "All of This" is a gothic-tinged pop song that uses strings and guitar effects to create a moody atmosphere.[43] The track "Here's Your Letter", according to Hoppus in the liner notes for Blink-182, is about "people's inability to communicate with one another and how words and explanations only confuse the issues."[42] "I'm Lost Without You" mixes an industrial loop with piano.[19] The latter track took many months to create, and took "over 50" different tracks, including two drum sets combined during the last minute of the song. Barker described the idea for the percussion combination as "something we always wanted to do, but never got around to," and believed the song sounded like Pink Floyd or Failure.[42]

The UK edition of the record features B-side "Not Now", originally recorded during the sessions. "Not Now" features a church organ in its verses and guitar riffs reminiscent of the Descendents; its subject matter continues the theme of complicated miscommunication and fading love.[47]

Packaging and title[edit]

Due to some contradicting sources, the title of the album (or lack thereof) is debated. A 2003 interview and article from MTV News discussing the naming of the pending album repeatedly refers to the release as the "untitled album".[19] However, some sources refer to the album as self-titled, such as the band's label's website[49] and many online stores including Amazon.com and the iTunes Store, although said listings may be due to cataloging purposes. Several critics have also used the terms "eponymous" and "self-titled" in describing the album.[50][51][52] In a 2009 MTV News article, James Montgomery refers to the album as self-titled, joking, "Or Untitled … It's never really been clear."[53]

The title for the album was originally rumored to be Use Your Erection I & II, a parody of the Guns N' Roses album Use Your Illusion,[29] but was revealed to be a joke Barker made to "get a rise out of people."[54] DeLonge, in reference to previous joke album titles (such as Enema of the State), stated, "We didn't want to label it with a joke title that people might expect." As such, a Billboard article from the week of the album's release lists three rejected joke titles: Diarrhea de Janeiro, Vasectomy, Vasect-a-you and "Our Pet Sounds".[28]

To support the new album, Blink-182 created an entirely new logo, a "smiley face" with X's for each eye and five arrows on the left side of its face. According to Barker, the Blink-182 logo originated at his clothing line, Famous Stars and Straps. Barker wanted to brand an icon for the band: "It just had to be a cool kind of happy face but I wanted arrows. You know, like The Jam were my favorite band, they always had arrows in their logos and stuff. It was just kind of inspired by pop-art."[54][55]

The cover for the album features only the band's name and the "smiley face" logo. DeLonge justified the simplicity in an interview by saying: "I hate when bands have this one little thing and you think the whole record's about whatever that title is or something, whether it's funny or sad or deep. It's like we'd rather it be: 'This is our band, check it out.'"[19] The album booklet features various photographs of the band taken in months prior to the album's release, including a photo of a bulletin board with song names featuring varying degrees of completion. Instead of one large "thank you" section, thanks are divided up by each band member, similar to Box Car Racer the year prior.[42] musicOMH described the album booklet as "...Meticulously put together and resembling a Warholian pastiche." Each song includes small notes detailing the lyrical inspiration for each song, what it means to each band member, and the recording techniques used.[43]

Promotion and singles[edit]

The band live in the Middle East, where they performed several songs from Blink-182 for the first time publicly.

Blink-182 was the band's first release on Geffen, which absorbed sister label MCA Records in 2003.[56] MCA had previously rushed the band into recording Take Off Your Pants and Jacket, but the band had much more freedom with Geffen. "Geffen came down and heard three songs and they said, 'This is the best record you've ever done, this is the record of your career, take as much time as you want, call us when it's done.' It just completely outlined the perspective of putting accounting before creative, and when you're in the entertainment business, you've got to put creative first. It's an art, you've got to look at it like an art, treat it like an art, and then you'll get the best product in the long run."[57] Promotion for the record included a "golden ticket" contest – the prize being a private Blink-182 show for the winner.[58] MTV's website streamed the full album a week before its release, beginning on November 10.[59] As promotion for the album and single release[s], the band performed "Feeling This" on Jimmy Kimmel Live! on a week after the release of the album on November 26, 2003,[60] and "Down" on Late Show with David Letterman on May 27, 2004.[61] Performances of "I Miss You" and "The Rock Show" on The WB's Pepsi Smash concert series from June 10, 2004, were released on the Australian Tour edition of the album, as well as the "Always" single.[62]

The band picked "Feeling This" as the first single because it was representative of the transition the band had undergone since Take Off Your Pants and Jacket.[63] A slightly different version of the song had been released previously as part of the soundtrack for the video game Madden NFL 2004 under the erroneous title "Action".[25] Barker explained in an interview that "'Action' just sounded kind of dorky to us. Like we would always call it 'Feeling This' and then someone at our label, I think, like wrote it as 'Action' one time and sent out singles to people. And it was always supposed to be 'Feeling This'."[54] The video for "Feeling This" was recorded shortly before the release of the album in October 2003.[63] The track peaked high at number 2 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart, hovering at that position for three weeks.[64] "I Miss You" was commissioned as the record's second single in December 2003, when the band recorded a music video for it.[32][65] "I Miss You" became arguably the most successful single from the album, becoming Blink-182's second number 1 hit on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart during the week of April 3, 2004, until dethroned by Hoobastank's "The Reason" two weeks later.[66]

Despite briefly considering "Easy Target" to be released as the album's third single, "Down" was released instead.[67] The video for "Down", which features real-life ex-gang members, made its television premiere in June 2004.[68] The single was a mixed success, peaking at number 10 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart during the week of July 31, 2004, but quickly falling off afterward.[69] "Always" was announced as the fourth and final single from Blink-182 in August 2004. "It's gonna change people's lives and might actually change the world forever," DeLonge jokingly predicted.[70] After deciding on the video concept, the clip was recorded and released in November 2004,[48] and continued success all the way into January 2005.[71] A fifth single from the album ("All of This") was discussed; however, plans were dropped following the band's declaration of an 'indefinite hiatus' in February 2005. In response to the idea of "All of This" becoming a possible single, DeLonge joked "We would love it because it's a bad-ass song, and The Cure's Robert Smith sings on it, and that makes us cooler than everybody else."[48]

Reception[edit]

Commercial performance[edit]

The album debuted at number three on the US Billboard 200 chart, with first-week sales of 313,000 copies.[72] In comparison, Take Off Your Pants and Jacket debuted at number one and sold more than 350,000 copies in its first week.[73] The album charted at number three, below fellow new album In the Zone by Britney Spears (number one) and above remix album Let It Be... Naked by The Beatles (number five).[72] Blink-182 charted highest in Canada, where it debuted at number one.[74] The album was also successful in other countries, debuting in the top ten in Australia, Denmark, and New Zealand.[75][76] As of September 2011, the album has sold 2.2 million copies in the US.[77]

The album has since been certified by the RIAA as double platinum,[78] and the Canadian Recording Industry Association (CRIA) and Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) as double platinum, respectively.[79][80] The album has also reached platinum certifications in the United Kingdom.[81]

Critical response[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Alternative Press 4.5/5 stars[82]
Allmusic 4/5 stars[35]
The A.V. Club (favorable) [46]
Blender 4/5 stars[83]
Entertainment Weekly A− [40]
IGN 8.4/10[84]
Rolling Stone 4/5 stars[44]
Spin 91% [52]
Sputnikmusic 5/5 stars[85]
USA Today 3.5/4 stars[86]

The album received general acclaim from music critics.[52] At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the album received an average score of 71, based on 12 reviews.[52] Jenny Eliscu of Rolling Stone, while giving the album four stars, wrote that "...their lyrics are still unsophisticated and lovelorn, but even the poppiest tunes prove artful". Her review regards Blink-182 as "more experimental and harder-hitting than anything else [the band] has done".[44] Blink-182 was included in the Top 50 Best of 2003 end of the year list by Rolling Stone.[59] The album was praised by Channing Freeman of Sputnikmusic, lauding the album as a "masterpiece" and both the pinnacle of Blink-182's career and the pop punk genre as a whole.[85] The album was given four stars by Allmusic's Stephen Thomas Erlewine, who called Blink-182 "an unexpected and welcome maturation from a band that just an album ago seemed permanently stuck in juvenilia." Erlewine believed the songwriting was more adventurous than any previous Blink album, to accompany the greater variety of sounds.[35] Blender's Jonah Weiner praised DeLonge's vocals, describing them as a "lean, thrilling ride through adolescent hopelessness."[83] AbsolutePunk called the album a "pop punk opus of rage, confusion, and love."[87] Many critics lauded the surprise appearance of The Cure vocalist Robert Smith on the track "All of This", with Entertainment Weekly describing the cameo as "consecrating the recrimination-filled proceedings".[35][40][87]

The band's decision in favor of more mature material was received positively by many critics; Tim Newbound of Soul Shine Magazine regarded the new sound as "not a disaster by any means," writing that "Blink show that they can retain their infectious and endearing qualities while recording music of a more thoughtful calibre."[88] IGN's Jesse Lord described the lyrics as having more importance than Blink's previous work and recommended the album.[84] Spin described the record as emotionally intense, and best experienced through headphones.[52] Nick Catucci of The Village Voice called the album "brilliant" and compared Blink-182 to fellow pop punk band Green Day's 2000 effort, Warning, writing, "Let it be noted, however, that Warning searches for subject matter where Blink-182 searches for meaning."[89] Catucci and a handful of others critics expressed surprise at the newfound maturity of the band.[35][44][86]

Greg Kot of Entertainment Weekly compared the vocal harmonies on the first single "Feeling This" to the likes of Queen, and described the album as a classic.[40] Scott Shelter of Slant gave the album four stars, stating "Giving up the fart jokes is risky business for Blink—but Blink-182 might just be the band's best album to date." He called "The Fallen Interlude" an example of the band's emotional growth, and regarded "Go" as "vintage Blink-182, two minutes of nonstop energy."[90] A.D. Amorosi of The Philadelphia Inquirer compared the sound of the album to "new-wave '80s", alluding to tracks "All of This" and "Always", describing the latter as "contagious" and "tracking the robo-pop groove."[91] Kevin Moreau of ShakingThrough.net viewed that "Feeling This" "underscores the album's overwhelming sense of sonic diffusion," but asserted that "abrupt rockers" such as "Go" and "Easy Target" keep the album from becoming off-putting.[51] In contrast, The A.V. Club believed "The disc [does] meander in spots, and its most achingly sincere love songs become cloying."[52]

Blink-182 concert tours[edit]

The band performing in Bahrain for sailors and marines in August 2003.

Blink-182 announced the first tour in support of Blink-182 on October 17, 2003, named the DollaBill Tour. The all-ages club tour featured support acts Bubba Sparxxx and The Kinison, and, as the name suggests, tickets were sold for $1. DeLonge explained the first return to small venues in several years in the initial press release for the tour: "For years we played in small clubs and that's where you can really connect with your fans."[92] The tour ended shortly after the release of Blink-182 on November 21, 2003, at local San Diego venue SOMA. An additional concert at the Phoenix Concert Theatre on December 2, 2003, was held in Toronto, Canada with My Chemical Romance as the opener.[93]

A performance at KWOD's Twisted X-Mas show shortly before Christmas 2003 became the final show of the year,[94] and a European tour followed during in mid-February 2004.[95] During an Australian tour in March 2004, Barker injured his foot and the band was forced to cancel tour dates in Japan for the rest of the month.[96] A U.S. tour took place from late April to May 2004,[97] and a highly publicized tour featuring Blink-182 and No Doubt was performed during June 2004, in support of Blink-182 and No Doubt's The Singles 1992–2003.[98][99] The cancelled Australian tour dates were rescheduled and performed in August and September 2004.[100] The band appeared on September 17, 2004, at the MTV Icon tribute to The Cure, performing a cover of "A Letter to Elise" and "All of This", which was recorded and later broadcast on October 31, 2004.[101] The band headed to Europe for a two-week tour near the end of the year,[48] which culminated at their final show on December 16, 2004, at the Point Theatre in Dublin, Ireland.[53][102]

Although the band had planned for a U.S. tour in support of "Always", tensions within the band had risen on the final European tour and the band announced an 'indefinite hiatus' on February 22, 2005, as breakup rumors swirled.[103] After touring through 2004, the three essentially stopped communicating with one another. Hoppus had initially had difficulty accepting the group's new direction.[21] After some tragic events involving the band and its entourage, Blink-182 reunited in February 2009.[53]

Legacy[edit]

The Los Angeles Times referred to Blink-182 as the band's "underrated masterwork,"[21] writing that the record is generally considered by "fans, critics and band members alike as its best work, Blink’s answer to Pet Sounds or Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band."[104] The band themselves have regarded it as a "huge turning point" in their career, marking a change in the way to write and record music, as well as view themselves.[105]

The band celebrated the tenth anniversary of the album by performing it in full in November 2013. After a pair of Hollywood Palladium shows sold out in a record 32 seconds,[104] the band added three additional dates at The Wiltern in Los Angeles, which also sold out.[21] MTV News called it "a fitting tribute to an album that, in the decade since it was first released, has become a bit of a touchstone — a defining moment not just for the band, but for the genre of punk, in all its permutations."[105] Jon Blistein of Radio.com called the album "an unquestionable masterpiece" in the site's "Not Fade Away" series, which examines "some of the greatest albums of the past few decades."[45] In it, he writes on the album's influence: "Blink-182 was the band’s most concise break from the pop-punk formula and a catalyst for the wave of pierced-hearts-stuck-to-sleeves-with-tears-and-guyliner "emo" outfits that rose to popularity in its wake (sans the potty humor, of course), including but not limited to Fall Out Boy, My Chemical Romance and Panic! at the Disco."[45]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written and composed by Blink-182 except where noted[42]

No. Title Length
1. "Feeling This"   2:53
2. "Obvious"   2:43
3. "I Miss You"   3:47
4. "Violence"   5:20
5. "Stockholm Syndrome"   2:42
6. "Down"   3:03
7. "The Fallen Interlude" (Blink-182, Jack Gonzalez) 2:13
8. "Go"   1:53
9. "Asthenia"   4:20
10. "Always"   4:12
11. "Easy Target"   2:20
12. "All of This" (Blink-182, Robert Smith) 4:40
13. "Here's Your Letter"   2:55
14. "I'm Lost Without You"   6:22
Total length:
49:23

Personnel[edit]

[42]

Chart history and certifications[edit]

Chart procession and succession[edit]

Preceded by
Afterglow by Sarah McLachlan
Canadian number-one album
December 6, 2003 – December 13, 2003
Succeeded by
Afterglow by Sarah McLachlan

Release history[edit]

Region Date Label Format Catalog
World November 18, 2003 Geffen Digital download
Canada CD, CS B000133612[110]
Australia 9861407[111]
United Kingdom 0602498614082[110]
Europe 0602498614075[110]
Japan UICF-1018[112]
United States 000133612[110]
August 31, 2010[113] Mightier Than Sword LP[114] mts.023[115]
December 20, 2011 Universal/Geffen/Hot Topic LP B0016366-01
2012 Mightier Than Sword LP (reissue) mts.023/B0013555-01
December 24, 2014 Universal/Geffen/Hot Topic LP (reissue) B0016366-01

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External links[edit]