The Last Mixed Tape reviews The First Kiss of Love, the brand new studio album from alternative-pop act Cronin.
There’s nothing wrong with a bit of melodrama. We’re all melodramatic at heart, we all have moments of unbridled hip swaggering romantic abandon, and The First Kiss of Love is a record made for just that.
Injected with enough over the top bombast to make Neil Diamond or Scott Walker jealous, Cronin’s debut is so committed to its own opulent take on the retro-pop milieu that it’s hard not to be taken away by it, try as you might.
From the self-confident blast of soul that is ‘In Loneliness Lives Love’ to the slithering slow-groove of ‘See This Man’ The First Kiss of Love amps up the emotive pulse of the music and never really lets go.
The lyrics are equally dramatic. Love is an additive thing. Destructive, compulsive and illusive, The First Kiss of Love consumes itself with these emotive sparks. “We’re no good for each other. My Love Comes Tumbling Down’ screams Johnny Cronin during the final moments of ‘Nelson Riddle’ and the rest of the record follows suit.
So what is it about The First Kiss of Love that stops the album from becoming bloated and overcome by its own sense of pomp and circumstance. The answer is very little. The album does step over the line on several occasions. The ‘Prelude’ and ‘Interlude’ sections are unnecessary as is the cover of ‘Something’s Gotten A Hold of My Heart’, but the real question is “isn’t that point?”. Isn’t Cronin’s music designed to be wild and unrestrained? After all the album’s key theme of love is exactly that, an uncontrollable emotion that can consume us in the best possible way.
The First Kiss of Love is the type of record that you’re either for or against. Go with it, and you’ll be swept away by lush production and dramatized musical flourishes. Go against it, and it could be long, drawn out experience. Me? I went with it, and I’m glad I did.
The First Kiss of Love by Cronin is out now.