Would It Kill You?

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Would It Kill You?
Hellogoodbye would it kill you.jpg
Studio album by Hellogoodbye
Released November 9, 2010
Genre Folk, indie rock, folk pop, power pop
Length 35:38
Label Wasted Summer
Producer Forrest Kline
Hellogoodbye chronology
Ukulele Recordings
(2008)
Would It Kill You?
(2010)
Everything Is Debatable
(2013)
Singles from Would It Kill You?
  1. "When We First Met"
    Released: June 22, 2010

Would It Kill You? is the second studio album by Hellogoodbye. It was released November 9, 2010. "When We First Met" was the album's lead single, and it was released for free download on September 5, 2009. The album was produced by Forrest Kline, the frontman for the group.

Would It Kill You? was released four years after the band's break-through record Zombies! Aliens! Vampires! Dinosaurs!; the delay was largely due to a lawsuit between the band and its then-current label Drive-Thru Records. Once the lawsuit was settled, the band was released from their contract and released Would It Kill You? independently. Musically, the album features heavy use of real instruments, in contrast to the band's previous efforts, which relied on computerized effects like auto-tune and keyboards. Lyrically, the album delves into many issues surrounding romance.

Would It Kill You? was met with largely positive reviews, with many critics applauding the band's change in direction and its musical maturation. Financed by the band themselves and released on their very own Wasted Summer label, the album peaked at number 104 on the Billboard 200, where it remained for one week. The album also charted at number 22 on the Billboard Top Rock Albums chart, and number 12 on the Billboard Independent Albums chart.

Production[edit]

Background[edit]

After releasing 2006's successful Zombies! Aliens! Vampires! Dinosaurs!, Hellogoodbye anticipated releasing an album sometime in 2008.[1] However, the band soon got involved in a lawsuit with its then-record label, Drive-Thru Records. The lawsuit halted production on the album for a "year and a half", forcing the band to record "off and on".[2] Eventually, the lawsuit was finalized, and Hellogoodbye was released from their contract.[2] During this time, keyboardist Jesse Kurvink left the band, to be replaced by Joe Marro. The group also added Ryan Daly as a second guitarist.[3]

Music[edit]

Hellogoodbye frontman and album producer Forrest Kline sought to minimize auto-tune on Would It Kill You?

Musically, Kline said that the album features "more acoustic guitar, more real instruments".[4] He explained that on previous albums, the electronic instruments and manipulation were used because the band did not have access to certain sounds; however, most of the music on Would it Kill You? "is … someone performing" the instruments.[4] Kline felt that the "opportunity to expand [his] collection of instruments and having more access to actual instruments and people that play things" was what caused the shift in the band's sound.[4] Kline also sought to minimize the use of auto-tune on the album. Its presence on Zombies! Aliens! Vampires! Dinosaurs! was largely due to said record having been recorded in a home studio; Kline felt that, at the time, the effect was "awesome" and "allure[ing]" because it was experimental. However, once the effect began to saturate pop music, Kline liked it less and less.[4] The entire album was recorded in Kline's "garage-turned-studio".[5]

Release[edit]

Due to the fact that the band had left Drive-Thru Records, Hellogoodbye decided to release Would It Kill You? independently. The group released it on their very own Wasted Summer Records; Kline explained, "We wanted to put it out ourselves, so we figured we’re adults and that we can handle a little bit of business. So we started that and got distribution with it, it’s just kind of a name for putting out this record basically."[6] However, he did note that, without the backing of a major label, the band was forced to use most of their personal money to finance the record, which was both "scary" and "exciting".[5] "When We First Met" was the album's lead single, and it was released for free download on September 5, 2009, including the B-side "Not Ever Coming Home" and the music video.[7] The video for the song was produced, directed, and edited by Isaac Ravishankara.[8]

Reception[edit]

Critical response[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AbsolutePunk 95%[9]
AllMusic 4.5/5 stars[10]
Slant Magazine 3.5/5 stars[11]
USA Today 3.5/4 stars[12]

Would It Kill You? was met with largely positive reviews, with many critics applauding the band's change in direction, and complimenting the increased use of acoustic guitar, and the decreased use of auto-tuned vocals.[10][12][9] Thomas Nassiff of AbsolutePunk awarded the album a grade of 95%, and called it "more substantial" than any of the band's previous releases.[9] Furthermore, he wrote that "Forrest Kline has perhaps outdone himself"; he praised the band's lyrical and musical maturation, complimenting most highly the songs that feature Kline "belting out charming lyrics at a million miles an hour [while] the rest of the band is keeping the blistering pace with the same intensity."[9] Tin Sendra of AllMusic awarded the album four-and-a-half stars out of five, writing that it sounds more like "The Zombies or The Kinks rather than Jimmy Eat World or Weezer."[10] Sendra complimented the album for being "the sound of a guy coming out from behind the tricks he used to hide behind and laying himself bare"; furthermore, he applauded the album for having "no Auto-Tune, no novelty songs, and very few moments that would lead you to think the band would be welcome on a Warped Tour stage."[10] Edna Gundersen of USA Today commented on the band's growth, noting that they shied away from the use of "electronic filler", and instead focused on "sturdy instrumental interplay".[12] In addition, she wrote that the record explored the "darker complexities of romance" rather than "the corny confines of high school diaries".[12]

Kevin Liedel of Slant Magazine awarded Would It Kill You three-and-a-half stars out of five and called it an "ironically refreshing change of pace" because it is the "band following its natural instincts in the face of producing something edgier but far less sincere."[11] Joshua Khan of Blare Magazine gave the album three stars out of five, but was less complimentary, writing that "Would It Kill You? may still be a candy-coated disc but it’s an album that takes a stab in the dark, even if it pierces a damsel with a soft spot for lovesick seventh grade poetry."[13]

Commercial performance[edit]

Would It Kill You? was released on November 9, 2010, and charted at number 104 on the Billboard 200; the album only managed to chart for a single week before falling off.[14] However, the record also charted on the Billboard Top Rock Albums chart—peaking at number 22 and remaining for one week—and the Billboard Independent Albums chart—peaking at number 12 and remaining for three weeks.[15][16]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by Forrest Kline.

No. Title Length
1. "Finding Something to Do" 2:56
2. "Getting Old" (featuring Hive Hex Aprons) 3:00
3. "When We First Met" 2:35
4. "Betrayed by Bones" 3:25
5. "You Sleep Alone" 3:38
6. "When We First Kissed" 3:15
7. "The Thoughts That Give Me the Creeps" 2:54
8. "I Never Can Relax" 3:34
9. "Coppertone" 4:04
10. "Would It Kill You?" 3:38
11. "Something You Misplaced" 3:39

Charts and certifications[edit]

Charts[edit]

Chart Peak
position
US Billboard 200[14] 104
US Billboard Top Rock Albums[15] 22
US Billboard Independent Albums[16] 12

References[edit]

  1. ^ Jacobson, Bryce (December 17, 2007). "Hellogoodbye Single Goes Platinum, New Album in 2008". Driven Far Off. Retrieved August 17, 2013. 
  2. ^ a b Reid, Sean. "Hellogoodbye Finished with Drive-Thru". Alter the Press!. Spin Media. Retrieved August 17, 2013. 
  3. ^ Heisel, Scott (September 9, 2008). "AP Exclusive: Hellogoodbye Revamp Lineup, Plan Fall Tour". Alternative Press. Alternative Press Magazine, Inc. Archived from the original on May 30, 2009. Retrieved August 17, 2013. 
  4. ^ a b c d Masley, Ed (August 10, 2009). "Q&A: Hellogoodbye". AZCentral.com. Retrieved August 17, 2013. 
  5. ^ a b Nassiff, Thomas (January 27, 2011). "Indie Band Hellogoodbye Plays in Gainesville". The Independent Florida Alligator. Campus Communications Inc. Retrieved August 17, 2013. 
  6. ^ Common, Tyler (November 15, 2010). "Interview with Frontman Forrest Kline". CommonRevolt. Retrieved August 17, 2013. 
  7. ^ ""When We First Met" Free Single Bundle". Archived from the original on July 16, 2011. 
  8. ^ Hellogoodbye. "'When We First Met' Official Music Video". YouTube. Retrieved August 16, 2013. 
  9. ^ a b c d Nassiff, Thomas (November 5, 2010). "Hellogoodbye – Would it Kill You?". AbsolutePunk. Buzz Media. Retrieved August 17, 2013. 
  10. ^ a b c d Sendra, Tim. "Would it Kill You? – Hellogoodbye". AllMusic. Rovi. Retrieved August 17, 2013. 
  11. ^ a b Liedel, Kevin (November 16, 2010). "Hellogoodbye: Would it Kill You?". Slant Magazine. Retrieved August 17, 2013. 
  12. ^ a b c d Jones, Steve; Gundersen, Edna; Mansfield, Brian; Shriver, Jerry (November 9, 2010). "Listen Up: Kid Cudi's Second 'Moon' Shot is Dark, Artsy". USA Today. Gannett Company. 
  13. ^ Khan, Joshua. "Review: Hellogoodbye – 'Would It Kill You?'". Blare Magazine. Retrieved August 17, 2013. 
  14. ^ a b "Hellogoodbye Album & Song Chart History – Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved September 2, 2010. 
  15. ^ a b "Hellogoodbye Album & Song Chart History – Rock Albums". Billboard. Retrieved September 2, 2010. 
  16. ^ a b "Hellogoodbye Album & Song Chart History – Independent Albums". Billboard. Retrieved September 2, 2010.