CD Review: Patrick Stump, Soul Punk

When was the last time you were surprised by an album because you went in with a preconceived notion of what you felt the album would sound like? For those of you expecting Fall Out Boy II (Hold The Wentz), Patrick Stump's Soul Punk is a mature and funky affair that is miles above anything produced by Fall Out Boy.

I never realized Stump had such a soulful voice until I listened to this album. I went back and listened to Fall Out Boy more closely and sure enough, you can hear glimpses of his chops buried beneath the guitars but this album gives his vocals a chance to shine. At times he sounds like an incredible mashup of Prince and Terrence Trent D'Arby. Not only that, but the man wrote all the lyrics and music, played all the instruments, and produced the entire album by himself.

There are some great tracks on this album. The album leads off with "Explode," a funky, upbeat character study about a bomb defuser going through divorce, "a living breathing action screenplay cliche." In "This City," Stump has created the perfect concert staple ("Poughkeepsie, you've been a great crowd tonight! Tonight, this city IS MY CITY!") that's sure to get the crowd up and singing along in unison in a grand display of civic pride. "Run Dry (X Heart X Fingers)," with its brassy '80s synths, is an ode to drinking. Other standout tracks include "Spotlight (Oh Nostalgia)," "Greed," "Everybody Wants Somebody," and the Princetastic "Allie."

This is an amazing album, which is bound to turn a lot of heads if people give it a chance. Much of Soul Punk is begging to receive tons of radio airplay and rightfully so. It's infectious soulful pop that's a hell of a lot better than most of the stuff you'll hear on the radio.

Patrick Stump's Soul Punk will be released on October 18, 2011.

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