The Jonas Brothers Find Themselves In The Middle Of A Slightly Hostile Writing Workshop

noah | June 16, 2009 10:00 am

Our look at the closing lines of the week’s biggest new-music reviews continues with a roundup of reactions to the Jonas Brothers’ Lines, Vines, and Trying Times, which arrives in stores today: • “What really circumscribes the Jonas’ otherwise sweet appeal is the limitation of their writing. The Monkees made great records because they hired brilliant writers. The Jonas Brothers cut passable ones because they won’t. How long will personal ambition (and the lure of publishing royalties) keep them hobbled this way?” [Jim Farber, New York Daily News] • “They write their own tunes, showing off the tricks they learned from their Stevie Wonder and Neil Diamond albums, trying U2-style rock, country and Eighties hair metal. But the weirdest moment has to be ‘Don’t Charge Me With the Crime,’ a gangsta-rap tale with police sirens, machine guns and guest star Common. Even if the Bros aren’t having any luck handling girls, they do better with guitars—and that just puts them in a long rock & roll tradition.” [Rob Sheffield, Rolling Stone] • “The Jonas Brothers have discovered many intriguing angles for realizing their songcraft talents, but they don’t yet have perspective on a world outside the Jonas orbit. But that’s nothing a few years and a serious, mane-tearing heartbreak won’t fix one day.” [August Brown, Los Angeles Times] • “And as for the lyrics, those metaphors only go so deep: A crumbling relationship is likened to ‘World War III,’ and ‘Turn Right’ stalls on ‘the never-ending racetrack you call life.’ ” [Greg Kot, Chicago Tribune]