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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

2-26-24 PDF
February 26, 2024
An inside look at Bobby B. Beacon’s insides. Illustrated by Bianca Oppedisano/ Mass Media Staff.
Bobby's Inside Story
February 26, 2024

Not A-‘OK’

I don’t have a gay bone in my body. I’ve never been the slightest bit attracted to anything even resembling a male my whole life. But holy shit. Jon Mclaughlin is such a babe. Whoa. Nelly. Is this hottie a hottie! I can’t even listen to Jon Mcalughlin’s new album, OK Now (Island Records), without trying to picture him standing in front of me naked, whispering sweet nothings into the air, which has been turned into the most magnificent opiate after coming into contact with Jon’s sweaty body. Oh Jon. Jon Mclaughlin. Jon Walsh. Ben Mclaughlin. Jon Mcwalsh. Jon Mcdonalds. Ben Burger King. Any way would be fine by me. Just the thought of pieces of our two names coming into close contact is enough to make me give this album five out of five stars. No, seven stars! Seven big Jon Mclaughlin stars out of five! If only things were that simple, Jon Mclauglin…

OK Now screams mainstream pop in every snare hit, vocal flourish, boring bass line, and echoey piano part. Like Jon Mclaughlin’s image, the production is all very clean-cut. Practically every chord change can be predicted from the start of each song. Mclaughlin’s voice rarely sounds as if it has any real emotion. Not only does the overall sound of the album lack any originality, but also the guitar riff in Dance Your Life Away is strangely similar to the riff in Thin Lizzy’s Jailbreak.

Parts of OK Now have a very 80’s sound that would make them fun to listen to in a nostalgic way, if it wasn’t for Mclaughlin’s James Blunt-ish vocals, which places the album right in the mid-to-late 2000’s.

The lyrics on OK Now almost seem as though they are trying to mock mainstream pop lyrics. For example, on Always on My Mind: “You are always on my mind/…When I sleep every dream is you filling up this bed/You are always on my mind/Always on my mind/I always thought I could make it alone, but you make it so hard to leave.” I give points to Mr. Mclaughlin for not holding any pretensions in his lyric writing.

I’ll give Jon Mclaughlin a little break because I’m clearly not his target audience. Taking in to consideration that he sang in the Disney movie Enchanted and toured with Kelly Clarkson, I think it’s safe to say he’s probably more popular with music listeners that are younger and more female than I. Despite this, I’m going to have to give this album two out of five stars. It lacks any real original content or convincing emotion. Mclaughlin gets a few points for not being pretentious and for giving a shout out to mainstream 80’s pop. If it wasn’t for teenage girls crooning over Mclaughlin’s looks, I really wonder what success Mclaughlin would have.