As a Blue fan, I thought All Rise, Blue's first album, stood out because in a sea of bland boybands with their purely pop tunes, Blue's poppy R&B sound was just plain refreshing.
But One Love was not as good. They seemed to rely on the same formula of party tracks and a couple of love songs. When you expect them to make their sound more refined, better, it sounds flat. Some of the lyrics were too simple and could not even be saved by a nice melody.
Guilty sees them make more of an effort at writing and it clearly shows. Songs like Bubblin' which is catchy and more hip-hop, Summer's Gone, Breathe Easy, Walk Away, How is A Man Supposed To Change show that Blue are on their way to growing up. I stress, on their way. Their sound is more mature and the lyrics to some of the songs clearly show their effort.
And while some of the lyrics are still a bit simple and rather cliche - Alive, Where You Want Me - the lyrics are a bit better than before. And even if it IS rather simple, the melody's better. So you can either love the song or just ignore the lyrics and sing along with the song.
Lee's soaring vocals and heartfelt tune in Breathe Easy makes this song one of my personal favourites, along with Walk Away with its slightly rock sound at the beginning.
I have a feeling Blue will be around for a while, at least for two more albums. If they refine their sound more, develop their songwriting skills and try their hand at producing the music, this band could go far. They could even take a risk and play around with a new sound, unlike Westlife.