Falling back in love with OneRepublic
By Estela Garcia Contributor
OneRepublic’s new album, “Oh My My,” is the bittersweet problem I needed. Why? Because we’re involved in a long-term relationship.
We flirted with their debut hit breakup song “Apologize” in 2006. They released their first album “Dreaming Out Loud” the following year where we got to know each other. I wasn’t feeling a connection, yet something was there.
Two years later, OneRepublic and I entered our honeymoon phase with the release of their sophomore album, “Waking Up.” Ryan Tedder proved his abilities as a songwriter and the band figured out their sound. I was falling for them indefinitely. But happy times don’t always last.
In 2013, the band came out with their third album, “Native” after a three year hiatus. I knew things were going south with the release of the single “Feel Again.” I was glad that the band released something new, but the song wasn’t the OneRepublic I knew. I didn’t break up with them as their next single, “If I Lose Myself,” had me head over heels. It reminded me of their first two albums. It was enough to stay.
The real test of the relationship had begun. It was off to a rocky start; I was going back and forth, thinking about whether or not I could support this new sound.
All that was left for us was one thing. There were hints that they would pop the question since May, with the release of the first single off the new album, “Wherever I Go,” which made me doubt the new album.
Would they be able to give off that amazing spark, like with “Apologize?” Or the great time we had with “Waking Up”? Or would life simply continue with stuff like “Native?” These were the questions I asked myself considering what I was being asked. And that was a problem. If “Wherever I Go” was giving me doubts, what did it mean?
Their next single “Kids,” came out and swept me off my feet. The song had the new OneRepublic sound I wasn’t a fan of, but it convinced me otherwise. I was falling for them all over again. So when “Oh My My” was released, I wanted to think about my answer.
Hearing it for the first time, I was ready to say no. They tried too hard. The songs are so eclectic and the album is messy. For example, “A.I,” featuring Peter Gabriel, is unnecessary. I would’ve loved to hear Gabriel and Tedder harmonize a beautiful chorus but instead I got a wannabe dance song that is neither these two artists.
With all great relationships, consideration is key. I said yes to “Oh My My” because at the end of the day, I don’t see myself from listening to them. Some may say I settled, but I say that the time will come where I fall in love once again.
My favorite song off the album is “Let’s Hurt Tonight” which styled after “I Lived” from “Native.” Other tracks that definitely deserve a listen are “Dream” and “Better,” which both contain their new sound. “Choke” reminds me of their stuff on “Waking Up,” similar to “Secrets.”
The title track of the album appears to be the band’s effort to have an EDM tune to their name, but they failed with it. Speaking of which, they also feature Cassius and Santigold on the album, on the tracks “Oh My My” and “NbHD.” From the two, I’m most thankful for the latter.
I listened to the album for an entire day and found the band I had appreciated for so long. They remain close to their beginnings but can tie in something new. A band from Denver made the world their stage.