fri 21/01/2022

CD: Blondie - Pollinator | reviews, news & interviews

CD: Blondie - Pollinator

CD: Blondie - Pollinator

Aiming for now-ness, the perennial pop stalwarts hit a bump in the road

Instead of resting on the laurels of the great music they made some 40 years ago, Blondie - still led by original members Debbie Harry and Chris Stein - are back with an album that tries to channel their past chart-toppers while also keeping in touch with modern pop, as filtered via collaborations with Sia, Charlie XCX and The Strokes’ Nick Valensi. Unfortunately for them, Pollinator reminds more of the Sonic Heroes videogame soundtrack than Parallel Lines.

The singles “Fun” and “Long Time” are overflowing with squawking keyboards, uplifting vocal lines, and overly metronomic (as in, dull) drums. “Fun” especially sounds like TV advert music. Whether it’d be better suited to soundtracking a Volkswagen driving past the Grand Canyon or people drinking Smirnoff in a club is, perhaps, its most engaging aspect.

“Too Much” draws as much on Journey’s abominable “Don’t Stop Believing” as it does Rebecca Black’s “Friday”; far too sugary and Glee-like to be enjoyable. “When I Gave Up on You” is four minutes of tuneless country ballad. Pollinator almost makes you wish Blondie were one of those bands who just do exactly what they’ve done before. After all, what was wrong with the edge and smoky haze of “Rapture”?

The album does have redeeming moments. The Johnny Marr-penned “My Monster” has Harry’s best vocal performance of the album,:quivering and melancholic, she sounds like a wizened rock’n’roller lamenting the mistakes she’s made, not least on the beautifully crooned opening line “Human beings are stupid things when we’re young”.

I really, really, really wanted to love this album but that just makes disliking it all the worse. Blondie by numbers? If only...

Overleaf: listen to "My Monster" by Blondie


Whoever wrote this, clearly is either, tone deaf, doesn't know blondies music, or very young. This is Blondies best album since 1999's No Exit album. It's already shaping up to be one of their best. Songs like "Fun, My Monster, Long Time and Fragments" stand among their best from their long history.

This album has a lot of great songs, review is a lot of bullshit.

It's one person's review... can't let one person change how and why you love Blondie in the first place.... Yes - you can never go back to recreate what was done with the original band members - and I'm sure that's not what they were trying to create...

Wow, I do not know who writes here something just to hurt Blondie because this person really did not listening to the music on this cd. All the song that are already released are great and from this time (infact this is the first bad review worldwide , so the writer has some double agenda I guiss). I say listen to "My Monster", the breathtaking " Fragments" and "Long time" and you will come to the conlusion that Blondie is one of the greatest Bands of 4 decades !.

What a shame. I've heard 1/2 the album already and it's one of their very best. It could be the very best if the rest is half as good as what I've heard so far. To each his/her own but I couldn't disagree more.

Best we can hope for without IMPORTED AIR

I have to totally disagree with the poor review this oaf has wrote of this album. Pollinator is shaping up to be the album of the summer. Every song I've hear is a total gem. I remember when Blondie released the album Parallels Lines and it getting bad reviews. It sold 20 million copies world wide and now is classed as the best pop album ever made by many which says alot about reviews.

Congratulations to you for telling the truth about a mediocre album. So-called critics write effusive crap to appease publicists and avoid the bullying that fans get up to in comment sections like this one. It's not a great album. A few good moments, and better than Ghosts of Download, which was a total trainwreck.

This review is so ironic. Did you really listen to the whole thing? It's their best album in years. All reviews are giving to it 4 or 5 stars out of 5. I think it's insulting that you mention Rebeca Black in the same paragraph you mention Blondie. Definitely, you've got not idea about what you're saying.... be happy man.

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