Hanson -- Middle Of Nowhere

Reviewed by Andrew Downing

I know that many of you have already pre-judged Hanson, based on the song "MMMbop."

Let me tell you now, Hanson have far more musical depth than is evidenced in their feel-good first single.

Actually, I think "MMMbop" gets a bad rap. "Too happy," a lot of people say. Well just what the heck is wrong with happy? I, for one, have had it up to here with alternative music's angst-angst-angst approach. Some of us want to be happy sometimes, as opposed to most alternative songwriters, who seem to be angry at everything, and looking for someone to blame.

Hanson certainly doesn't do that. Nor do they attempt to overwhelm you with sugary-sweet happiness. This CD is a refreshing mix of up-tempo songs and ballads of surprising depth, given the ages of the songwriters.

Bright spots on the album are the ultra-hooky "MMMbop," and two ballads, both with great queer appeal; the introspective "Weird," and the somewhat chilling "Yearbook."

Unfortunately, there are a few songs which make Hanson's age readily and painfully apparent.

I'd say buy this CD if it's on sale. Mercury Records' list price is excessive, given the product offered. 

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