Release Date: Oct 6, 2009
Record label: Cherrytree
Genre(s): Rock, Pop, Punk
Three albums deep into their career now, Tokio Hotel manage to steer clear of a songwriting slump, but just barely, with the quality of tunes audibly dropping toward the end of the record, spreading fear that Europe's emo mall darlings may not be able to keep their teenage fans' attention the next time around. Not that it would be surprising, as the band's shtick was always kind of thin; in fact, it was, and still is on Humanoid, built on intentional simplicity. The guitars churn out gloomy rehashes of U2 and blink-182 riffs, streamlining them as much as possible while adding synths or even pianos in the background to make them even more sentimental, and the whole thing rumbles along at midtempo rhythms with Bill Kaulitz's wailing teen voice.
First they got Europe’s tweens squealing, then Tokio Hotel crossed the Atlantic and repeated the feat here, though on a significantly smaller scale. On Humanoid, their second English-language effort, the glammy Germans stick to their strengths, such as they are, piling tons of stadium-ready production on top of the band’s strenuously enunciated yowling and industrial synth and guitar riffs. The album’s title might be more appropriate than they realize: This music doesn’t particularly sound like it was created by human beings, but it’s no doubt close enough for their many fans.