You won’t be duped by “Hi-Five Soup!”

You won't be duped by

Frontman Christian Jacobs is famous for his onstage antics, his childish lyrics about superhero grandeur gives the album a playful quality.

Jen Vogl, Staff Writer

The Aquabats! channel their energy again to take over the world through music with their fifth studio release. With vocals by The MC Bat Commander (real name Christian Jacobs), “Hi-Five Soup!” takes lyrics that would normally sound inane and sings them shamelessy. The result gets up and dances for unbridled merriment.

The Aquabats! continue their blend of third-wave Ska and synthpop in “Hi-Five Soup!.” This album also contains elements of alternative-rock, but the primary instrument used for the tracks remains the synthesizer throughout the album.

“Hi-Five Soup!” bounces from track to track in such high spirits that it keeps fingers and toes tapping along to the synth beat. The childish lyrics are sung so that The Aquabats! sound completely serious while describing their awesome shark-fighting skills in the water or encouraging their audience to have a food fight on the moon.

The lyrics of the songs are unabashedly straightforward, and they work. The love song on the album, “The Legend is True!,” jumps right in with the line, “I like your face and you like mine, too.” Another song, “Hey Homies!,” sings the praises of giving hugs. The simplistic approach to the lyrics gives the songs a whimsical feeling not found with other bands.

While most of their songs power through at an up-tempo beat, some of the songs like “Luck Dragon Lady!” and “All My Money!” slow down to be more of a guitar-driven ballad during the bridges and chorus. The change in style gives the album a more rounded-out feel and keeps the peppiness in each track from becoming too obnoxious.

Other songs like “Just Can’t Lose!” rely more on the guitar instead of the synthesizer during the verses. These songs have a more alternative-rock feel than the rest of the decidedly electro-pop album. The song “Radio Down!” takes a break from the synth to feature a rap section by Biz Markie. These slight differences in styles help to contribute to make the album balanced.

The band’s quirkiness shines through with such tracks as “The Legend is True!,” “Poppin’ a Wheelie!” and “Radio Down!” Every song on the album sports an exclamation point like the band name.

As for new additions to their music arsenal, The Aquabats! makes use of auto-tune technology in the track “B.F.F.!” While not entirely necessary, the auto-tune adds to the over-all robot flavor of the song. The auto-tuned lyrics themselves prove difficult to hear without listening for them specifically, which is a nice turn from the current trend with auto-tune these days.

With “Hi-Five Soup!,” Aquacadets and newcomers alike will have fun jumping around and singing along to the unadulterated fun that the songs provide.