The Chainsmokers: ‘Memories…Do Not Open’ Debut Album Review

Track By Track

Track 1: “The One” – For an album starter, it definitely sets things off in the right direction. The theme of ‘ending a relationship that’s clearly going nowhere before it all explodes’ makes for a good story among the lyrics.  There’s a delicate balance between the focus on the lyrics and the electronic instrumentals riffs. (Grade: 8.5/10)

Track 2: “Break Up Every Night” – This song has more of the ‘pop/rock radio’ feeling to it. It’s reminiscent, to me, of We The Kings and their brand of music. This one focuses far more on being a ‘song’ in the traditional sense of what songs are. The instrumentals take a backseat role to the vocals, and it’s for the best in this track. (Grade: 9/10)

Track 3: “Bloodstream” – You can immediately catch the references to their summer hit, ‘Closer,’ in this song. It’s not even a subtle reference. It hits you right in the face if you’re actually paying attention to it. For me, that’s not exactly a bad thing. They managed to take part of their previous work and re-work it into its own original-esque track. As for the song itself, it’s certainly worth a replay. (Grade: 8.5/10)

Track 4: “Don’t Say” – This song follow’s the general theme, up to this point, of the the more negative sides of a relationship. Using the fact that you’re ‘only human’ isn’t a good enough excuse for messing up. It’s a subtly powerful message that works in its simplicity among the beats and instruments of the song. It doesn’t hit you over the head, but it’s certainly there if you want it. (Grade: 8.5/10)

Track 5: “Something Just Like This” – I, initially, previewed this song on Itunes when it was originally released. I was a little worried it would be too much a rehash, due to the controversy surrounding it. However, now listening to it in full, I’m glad they did what they did with their third track on the album. Coldplay adds a level of depth and creativity that I more than welcome. This is a collaboration I’d definitely want more of. (Grade: 9.5/10)

Track 6: “My Type” – This song is good, but something about the vocals doesn’t hit me the same way they did on ‘Don’t Say.’ The riffs come through and elevate the song in a way that makes it better than it might’ve been with a different set of beats. A good backing instrumental track does a lot for a song you might not like otherwise. (Grade: 8/10)

Track 7: “It Won’t Kill Ya” – When you have a good mix with The Chainsmokers, you know you have a great combination. This one incorporates the lyrics, the message of taking that extra step in a potential relationship, and a beat that I immediately loved when I heard it. If you love this group, you’ll more than likely love this song. (Grade: 9/10)

Track 8: “Paris”‘Bloodstream’ referenced ‘Closer’ rather blatantly. In this track, you can get the general feeling the summer hit brought to the table. However, this is far more of a sequel than a copy. It’s one of those songs that can easily get stuck in your head. A song like this needs to be on your playlist, especially if you can relate to how the couple referenced wants to take on the world and prove all of their critics wrong. (Grade: 9.5/10)

Track 9: “Honest” – The overlying message of this song about honesty and openness was one that surprised me more than anything else. I wouldn’t have expected something like that but, knowing how the general themes of the songs on this album are, the depth is something I can certainly appreciate. The music itself takes more of a backseat to the message, and I’m sure that’s not an unintentional thing.  (Grade: 8/10)

Track 10: “Wake Up Alone” – This track stands out, for me, because it’s another one of those perfect mixes. The Chainsmokers always put out good music. However, there’s just something about when they hit that perfect balance. It just makes the song better as a whole. The beat alone is one I could listen to on repeat. (Grade: 9/10)

Track 11: “Young” – This is one of the songs intended for ‘smooth listening.’ The beats aren’t as hard as they are on other tracks. You could turn this track on and have it in the background as you clean or do homework. Every album needs a ‘chill’ song or two, and this is that for this one. (Grade: 8/10)

Track 12: “Last Day Alive” – This is a great song to end the album. It’s not too hard or too soft on the ears. It’s the kind of song you’d hear in a graduation-based movie. It has the theme of ‘now or never.’ Go ahead and take that chance. Live your life in the mindset of ‘now or never.’ For an album with pretty great and deep meanings, this is one I’m glad they ended on.  (Grade: 9/10)

Final Grade: 9.4 / A- (This was an excellent debut album for The Chainsmokers. Every track is worth a reply, and there are multiple ones that can just get stuck in your head all day. I’d most definitely recommend this to a hardcore fan, a casual fan, and someone who might not have ever heard of this group. They’ve set the bar pretty high for themselves but, if they deliver the next time like they have here, I’m positive it’ll be a great album from the first track to the last.) 

What did you think about Memories…Do Not Open’? Share your thoughts in the comments below!


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