PRINT ONLY Album Review: OneRepublic’s ‘Native’

Maggie Mcginity

OneRepublic’s third studio album, “Native,” is a mixed bag of alternately-moody and peppy-pop rock. About half of the album is great music.

“Feel Again,” the lead single, is an upbeat song-story of coming back to life, full of drums, handclaps, and apt metaphors (“Heart’s still beating, but it’s not working/It’s like a hundred thousand voices that just can’t sing”).

The second single off “Native,” “If I Lose Myself,” is synth-heavy and driving, with a catchy melodic line and dancy instrumental transitions.

Other “Native” gems include “I Lived,” a bucket-list kind of song with extensive background vocals and light, acoustic guitar throughout and “Something I Need,” a pulsing track with steady piano, is surprisingly uptempo and positive considering its somewhat morbid take on love (“You got something I need/In this world full of people, there’s one killing me/And if we only die once, I wanna die with you”).

The rest of the tracks on “Native” are fairly boring, monotonous in melody, harmony, instrumentation, message and style. They generally blend together in a way, flowing nicely but not really leaving an impact on the listener or grabbing the listener’s attention.

“Counting Stars,” the first track on this album, is somewhat redeemed by its melody and provocative lyrics (“Everything that kills me makes me feel alive”), but its dream of counting stars instead of dollars rings a bit false when coming from a band whose debut album sold more than a million copies. “What You Wanted” is also redeemed by somewhat shocking lyrics.

3.5/5 stars