In addition to its Herculean hold on arrested adolescence, Cheap Trick proves ever-skillful at the task it long ago mastered: beating choruses into the ground until it strikes gold. These days, it more often hits clay, though "Sorry Boy" and "Too Much" are fine examples of the band's candy-coated Who sound. "My Obsession" can trump the latest indie power pop, and "If I Could" employs little electronic touches that actually add melodic twists, rather than coming off like old-guy trend-lagging touchups. Still, this record is packed with midtempo power ballads and a throwaway closer that was obviously tacked on at the last minute. So while Cheap Trick's latest ain't so Special after all, at least it means they'll soon come through town to let you scream along to "Surrender" again.
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