Album Review: Chip Chrome and Mono-Tones


Graphic by Rivy

Sofia Cedeño, Features Editor, Senior

Alternative rock band The Neighborhood is back with a brand new album called Chip Chrome & the Mono-Tones. Formed in Newbury Park, California, The Neighborhood is best known for their previous hits “Sweater Weather” and “Daddy Issues.” The album dropped September 25 and can only be described as multi-dimensional, taking the listener into an alternate universe with their use of chrome and low-tempo sounds. 

The album begins with “Chip Chrome,” a thirty second introduction to demonstrate what’s to come. It’s exactly what you’d think a song named “Chip Chrome” would sound like – futuristic and straight out of a sci-film. It features instrumentals that are nostalgic for movies of a similar genre and it successfully sets the mood for the rest of the album. 

The first half of the album includes songs “Pretty Boy,” “Lost in Translation,” “Devil’s Advocate,” “Hell or High Water,” and “Cherry Flavored.” The tone of each song reflects the differing themes. “Pretty Boy” is a sweet love ballad with soft and beautiful vocals whereas “Lost in Translation” is a complete contrast to that, discussing a miscommunication between a couple with a sample from The Manhattans’ “Wish That You Were Mine” track. “Devil’s Advocate” speaks on the voice in your head reminding you of the worst that can happen in every situation, using slow tempos and lower vocals that force the listener to actually listen. “Hell or High Water” is a song inspired by the movie with the same name, marking a transitional phase between the singer and his friend drifting apart. “Cherry Flavored” is a charming and steady song about sugar-coating things that you believe to be true. 

The second half of the album includes songs “Monotones,” “Boohoo,” “Silver Lining,” “Tobacco Sunrise,” and “Middle of Somewhere.” “Monotones” is a short melody, acting as a sort of intermission for the album. It discusses themes of belonging to a certain group of people and having privileged lifestyles. “Boohoo” returns to the loving and romantic side of the band, using short and breathy vocals to reveal insecurities that they deal with within the relationship. The final three tracks “Silver Lining,” “Tobacco Sunrise,” and “Middle of Somewhere” conclude the album on a satisfying high note. Each song is about tying up loose ends, living in the present and being happy with what you have. 

Overall, Chip Chrome & Mono-Tones is an interesting album. The band presents a new style of music while simultaneously keeping a very nostalgic feel of their previous work. The album touches upon various different ideas and themes that compels the listener to reflect on both themselves and society.