Definitely Not A-Okay
A-Ok!, the most recent album from California-based rockers, the Cosmonauts, isn’t so much a collection of unique and inspiring punk tracks as it is ten slightly different renditions of the same soft and basic song.
Lead Vocalist Derek Cowart has a deep, drawling voice which somewhat resembles that of The Killer’s Brandon Flowers at its lowest points, while reminiscent of the thoughtful authority of Moby’s sweet and sorrowful voice at its highest. Yet Cowart’s voice is extremely difficult to follow as it is almost monotone at points, which cancels out admittedly interesting yet depressing nature of lyrics such as in “Party at Sunday,” in which Cowart declares, “I fell in love and I hate it.” Unfortunately, due to the drawl of his voice, it is often difficult to discern exactly what Cowart is saying. This reduces many of the tracks to incoherent mumbling and basic, unimaginative rhythms.
It is clear that A-Ok! was purposefully written as a laid-back, relaxed collection of music, but the album is so relaxed that its general tone comes off as stilted and boring. Moreover, as each track begins with at least a minute of instrumental introduction and ends with at least another minute, the songs of A-Ok! tend to blend together into one long unfortunate prom set list – the kind of set that will keep the seniors from getting too handsy.
A-Ok! is full of tracks that you could broodingly walk down the sidewalk to after a bad breakup, as well as songs that are perfect for driving people from a house party that has gone on for way too long. If you are interested at all in what little this album has to offer, check out The Killers or Moby instead. The ironic and misleading A-Ok! is actually anything but.